The City of Cedar Rapids is dedicated to using LEED standards to guide the construction of new buildings. Incorporating LEED standards into the building design will help reduce maintenance and operating costs of the building over time.
- being located close to public transit lines
- having bicycle storage
- granting preferential parking to low-emitting and fuel efficient vehicles
- being built with recycled construction and high performance exterior wall panels designed to eliminate thermal conductivity.
- installing automatic shut off lights that are tied to sensors that dim or turn off when natural light levels are sufficient.
- Water-conserving plumbing fixtures and water bottle filling stations at drinking fountains have been installed.
- Rain gardens installed around the building and parking lot help reduce stormwater discharge in the storm system and help clean the water before entering the system.
- Highly reflective roof membrane and site paving reduces heat island effect by reflecting rather than absorbing the sun's heat.
The facility’s geothermal heating and air conditioning system cost $350,000, but the city has already received a $279,000 rebate and will pay off the balance in energy savings over the station’s first 18 months of operation.
The exterior windows comprise less than 30 percent of the exterior of the building and have thermal isolation breaks to eliminate cold outside temperatures being transferred to the inside surfaces of the frames. The glazing is high-performance, 1″ double-glazed insulating glass with a low e-coating which increases the insulating value and reduces solar heat gain.
The exterior envelope of the new library has been designed to minimize “thermal bridges” and short circuits through the wall assembly. The exterior walls are designed as rain screen assemblies which allow the ventilated wall cavities to “breathe” and cut down and/or eliminate opportunities for mold growth in concealed spaces. The R-value of the non-glass, exterior walls is R-28.
The library is designed to take full advantage of daylight harvesting techniques while minimizing glare on workstation surfaces through the strategic location of windows, large overhangs on the first floor, solar light tubes, and exterior sunscreens and automatically controlled perforated roller shades that are tied to daylight sensors in the staff work areas. The linear indirect lighting fixtures use high-efficiency T5 fluorescent bulbs that reduce the watts per square foot consumed by the building. The overhead lighting fixtures are tied to daylight sensors that automatically dim or turn off all overhead lighting fixtures that are not needed to provide adequate illumination to the public spaces of the library during daytime operating hours.
Green Roof & Stormwater
Twenty thousand square feet of the second floor roof has been developed as a green roof accessible to the public. The green roof absorbs most of the stormwater that would have otherwise entered the storm sewer through roof drains. The rainwater that falls on the remainder of the roof areas and paved hardscape of the site is directed to underground water-quality vaults through pervious paving to allow it to naturally drain into the soil. The objective is to retain 100% of all rainwater that lands on the site from all but an unusually heavy storm and preclude any of it from entering the storm sewer system.