Center For Neighborhood Technology (CNT) Renovated Office Building Becomes 13th in U.S. to Attain Platinum Certification

Center For Neighborhood Technology (CNT) Renovated Office Building Becomes 13th in U.S. to Attain Platinum Certification

Center for Neighborhood Technology

"We are very excited about achieving this certification," said CNT's CEO Kathryn Tholin. "CNT's mission is to promote more livable and sustainable urban communities. We wanted to actually live that mission through this renovation, and show other organizations that you do not need an enormous budget or a new building to become green."

A key goal for CNT was achieving Platinum status on a tight budget of only $82 per square foot; the cost of a conventional rehab in Chicago ranges from $90 to $130 per square foot. "The Center for Neighborhood Technology has shown that LEED Platinum certification can be done affordably," said Sadhu Johnston, Commissioner of the Chicago Department of Environment. "The City is proud of this accomplishment and we look forward to our continued partnership with CNT."

"Chicago has always been a showcase of innovative architecture," says Jonathan Boyer, architect of the project, a CNT board member and a principal with Farr Associates Architecture and Urban Design in Chicago. Farr Associates also designed Chicago's first Platinum-rated building, the Chicago Center for Green Technology, which opened in May 2002.

Notable features of the 14,000 square-foot CNT building include low-VOC finishes and sealants, recycled carpet, energy-efficient appliances and lighting and extensive bike storage. The building also has a thermal storage system (using ice and food-grade liquid glycogen) that collects cooling energy during low-cost off-peak periods and a photovoltaic system on the roof that supports 5 percent of the building's electricity needs. Outside the building, a rain garden absorbs stormwater runoff and native plants add cooling greenery to the community.

CNT's building is 52 percent more energy-efficient than a typical building designed to Chicago energy code (ASHRAE) standards. "Green building and green design are not just good for the environment," said Tholin. "In the long-term, they are also economically smart investments for protecting against the long-term risks associated with rising energy costs."

CNT is a twenty-seven year old Chicago-based non-profit that carries out research, policy advocacy and economic development projects in pursuit of building more livable and sustainable urban communities.

Farr Associates is a design firm founded in 1990 that works at the intersection of architecture, planning and preservation in order to create places that enrich human life while minimizing negative environmental impacts.

The LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Green Building Rating System is a voluntary, consensus-based national standard for developing high-performance, sustainable buildings.

Related Link: CNT Green Building Renovation

For more information contact:

Kara Heffernan
Center for Neighborhood Technology
2125 West North Avenue
Illinois 60647

Phone: 773.269.4045
Email: [email protected]

Posted February 2, 2006

Planetizen Courses logo

Planetizen Courses: Online Training in Urban Planning

Access more than 250 urban planning courses on your computer, phone, or tablet. Learn today, plan for tomorrow.

View Courses

Edmonton, Canada

Planetizen AICP Exam Prep Class logo

Planetizen AICP* Exam Prep Class

90% of students who took our class passed the exam and became AICP* certified.

View Class

image of laptop and class instructor Jeff Levine