At EVstudio we are constantly keeping up with the latest information and tools available to help us work in the most effective way possible. I’ve just had the opportunity to check out a brand new website called LEEDuser.com offering a comprehensive new tool which could be a valuable tool for even the most seasoned of professionals when working on a LEED (Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design) certification project. The site has been created by the same people who created BuildingGreen.com with the help of leading national and international green building experts such as YRG, Fore Solutions, Dan Ackerstein, Flack + Kurtz, AEC, EDAW, Viridian, & Geiler & Associates.
One of the best things about the web-site is that it is built around the recent 2009 changes to the LEED 3.0 Rating Systems creating a free opportunity for those of you who haven’t been able to attend a local seminar or haven’t wanted to dedicate the time or money yet to learn about the changes from LEED 2.2 to LEED 3.0. Although they don’t yet have information on every pre-requisite and credit available through the LEED Rating Systems, they have started with some of the most difficult, tricky or misunderstood of the LEED credits and the information offered for each of these credits is phenomenal. The site is very user friendly and easy to navigate and includes information about the new Regional Credits, green building strategies such as Daylighting, Green Roofs and Porous Paving in addition to very in-depth information, tips from the experts and resources for each of the credits that are currently available on the site. It also acts as a very useful portal to finding the peripheral information necessary for navigating a LEED certification project such as links that lead you directly to where you can find the information for ASHRAE Standard 90.1 – 2007, for example. Interestingly enough, in addition to the nationally applicable information, there seems to be quite a bit of regionally specific information based on real world experience stemming from the collaboration with YRG and the other experts and the municipalities & jurisdictions that they are familiar with. For example, a link to the Denver Water Quality Management Plan is included in the resources available for the Sustainable Sites – Stormwater Quality Credits resources, in addition to a list of other such resources. There is an incredible opportunity to strengthen this type of regionally specific real-world knowledge through a built-in feature of the site which is a field for comments within the pages for each of the credits. This tool has the blog-like potential to become a very powerful resource for users that will allow them to ask questions of their peers and share real world information and experience on LEED projects specific to each region, LEED credit & sustainable strategy.