WASHINGTON - The American Institute of Architects (AIA) has named the year’s top 10 examples of sustainable architecture and green design, selected by the AIA’s Committee on the Environment (COTE).

Many of the new buildings have achieved Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Platinum certification, the highest level of achievement under the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED certification program. The top buildings cover a range of uses, including a student center, a synagogue, apartment buildings, and large commercial buildings. They are located in six U.S. states - California, Illinois, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Texas, and Washington - as well as in Victoria, British Columbia, and in Beirut, Lebanon.

In terms of energy, most of the winning buildings make use of natural daylighting, ventilation, and shading. The buildings also draw on such energy technologies as radiant heating and cooling, evaporative cooling, displacement cooling, waste heat recovery, water-source heat pumps, variable-speed pumps and fans, lighting controls, high-performance windows and doors, automated exterior blinds and louvers, and energy-efficient appliances and equipment. Many generate renewable energy on-site using solar photovoltaic power systems, while the more innovative on-site energy systems include a 200-kilowatt wind turbine and a biomass gasification system that runs on waste wood.

For more information, visit the AIA/COTE Top Ten Green Projects Website at www.aiatopten.org/hpb/.

Publication date:04/27/2009