Bend's Abacus GC takes lead on LEED-H green home certification
Feb 02,2007 00:00 by Bend Weekly News Sources
Homebuilder, designer and developer Abacus GC is the first Central Oregon company to participate in the U.S. Green Building Council's new Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system for homes. LEED-H is the most rigorous residential green building standard in U.S.

Now in the final phase of construction, the Newport District Modern House Project is on course to become the area's first LEED-H rated homes. According to LEED-H certifier Bruce Sullivan of Earth Advantage, the homes are projected to save about 54% in energy consumption over standard code-built homes. Features such as ductless heating, blown-in insulation, rooftop solar panels, wheatboard cabinets, Forest Stewardship Council-certified wood framing, airtight construction, indoor ventilation systems and high energy efficiency will contribute to the project's final LEED-H rating.

"LEED-H requires enormous ongoing scrutiny and lots of documentation and record keeping," Sullivan says. "Participating in this program takes substantial commitment on the part of builder, and Abacus has made that commitment."

Sullivan says the occupants of LEED-H rated homes benefit from a healthier, more efficient living space. The community benefits because new development is properly scaled, fits within the community and uses fewer resources, such as water and electricity. And builders benefit because, as surveys spanning the last 20 years indicate, consumers want the option of buying "green" homes.

Abacus recently sponsored Central Oregon's first LEED-H workshop, which was attended by some 40 participants, representing 15 local and Portland-based companies.