In celebration of Earth Day, we're highlighting a few eye-catching aquatics facilities that have earned LEED certification.
LEED -- Leadership in Environmental Energy and Design -- is a points system established by the U.S. Green Building Council that rates the design, construction, operation and maintenance of green buildings, homes and neighborhoods.
First up is a high school swimming pool in a northwest Chicago suburb that has garnered special recognition for its eco-friendly makeover.
The Buffalo Grove High School natotorium, which was renovated in August 2014 to the tune of $11 million, just received its LEED Silver certification, the Daily Herald reported on April 17.
The project included water use reduction, green power, certified wood, green housekeeping, green education and sustainable material resources, all of which contributed to the certification, the news agency reported.
The facility joins a growing roster of buildings in a state that has the the most LEED-certified square footage of any in the nation, according to the report.
It also is the latest known aquatics facility to receive the certification. It joins facilities such as Dream Designs winners Grand Prairie Aquatics & Multiplex in Grand Prairie, Alberta, Canada, and the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs.
Grand Prarie, part of the Community Knowledge Campus, offers opportunities for every level of athlete and guest. The $13 million public aquatics facility includes five bodies of water in one space.
The Campus Recreation Center at the University of Colorado was the first public building in southern Colorado to earn gold certification status from the U.S. Green Building Council.
There's also the East Portland Community Center in Portland ,Ore., which became the first LEED Platinum swimming pool complex in the Western U.S in 2010.
Designed by SERA Architects, the space features the addition of a 22,000-square-foot aquatics facility to the existing 32,000-square-foot community center.
Others, too, are in hot pursuit of the certification. Buffaloe Road Aquatic Center, a 2014 Dream Designs honoree in Raleigh, N.C., currently is in the process of seeking its certification. And there likely are others.
Interested in having your facility join the LEED certification movement? Check out some expert advice on how to pursue LEED certification for your facility.