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USGBC Awards One of the First Certification Under Its LEED for Homes Pilot Program in Seattle

Today, the US Green Building Council (USGBC) recognizes Cascade Built's Jackson Townhomes as one of the area's first to receive a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification under its LEED for Homes pilot program. LEED for Homes is a USGBC green homes pilot program that evaluates the environmental features of single and multi-family homes. LEED certified homes are designed to be energy efficient, environmentally sound, resource friendly, and healthy places for its occupants.

In Seattle, there have only been two other homes certified in the LEED for Homes pilot to date. These 'eco-urban' townhomes were built by Cascade Built, a new, Seattle-based green developer. LEED will provide national consistency in defining what constitutes a green home. Rising energy and water costs concern many homeowners, and LEED certified homes are energy efficient and consume fewer resources than conventional houses.

LEED is a national brand that potential homeowners and tenants can look for -- to readily identify true green homes. LEED certified homes consume less energy, use less water, and are safe and healthy places for their families to live. All LEED Homes are third party inspected, performance tested, and certified to be higher-performing than conventional homes.

A LEED certified home includes high performance features designed to provide improved heath, safety, comfort, and lower operating costs. LEED certified homes are also more environmentally friendly, more durable, less polluting, and make substantially better use of resources. In addition, the net cost of owning a green home may be no more than the net cost of a conventional home.

Located in Seattle's Central District neighborhood, the new Cascade Built townhomes employ forward-thinking methodologies around urban infill, building footprint reduction and considerate design for the owner, community and next generation. These townhomes are the first in a series that Cascade Built plans to offer and are enclosed in a contemporary exterior that utilizes 24" on-center framing to reduce use of wood and increase insulation capacity. The townhomes also incorporate rainscreen technology to keep the building dry and eliminate mold, and are coated by non-toxic paint. Inside, owners will be delighted by incredible use of daylighting -- or window walls -- to maximize natural light, a selection of recycled, environmental, and non-toxic finishes, as well as an open and deliberate floor plan that leaves no unusable space.

Eleven local and regional organizations, called LEED for Homes Pilot Providers, have formal responsibility for rating LEED Homes during the pilot phase. Cascade Built worked with Earth Advantage and O'Brien & Company on this project to ensure the LEED for Homes standards were met.

The pilot version of the LEED for Homes Rating System is now complete. After a public review period and a membership ballot, the final LEED for Homes Rating System was launched in late 2007.

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