In late 2010, the United States Green Building Council expanded the LEED for Homes certification with a new Multifamily Midrise category, in order for 4-6 story residential buildings to pursue LEED certification. As the original LEED for Homes certification was designed for single family and low rise multi-family, the program did not accommodate the special demands of the slightly taller projects, especially with the increased density of living units. Full-unit compartmentalization is required with this new program, making special detailing of tenant walls and floors critical. The big difference with this new program is in the commissioning. In lieu of a commissioning agent, who typically completes most of his work during and after the construction period, an accredited LEED for Homes Provider is required to be part of the design team from the inception of the project onward, following the project through the creation of construction documents and visiting the construction site on regular intervals to ensure conformance of built work to design.
Arrowstreet has long been a pioneer with the LEED rating system, having completed the first LEED Platinum building in Boston and the first LEED Silver retail building in Maine. With these projects, and others, we have pursued LEED certification in the more familiar NC (new construction) and CI (commercial interiors) categories. With the new LEED for Homes Multifamily Midrise category, we’re now pursuing LEED certification on the five-story Boltwood Place apartment building in Amherst, Massachusetts. Its twelve apartments and a small ground-floor retail space are nestled in a small parcel behind the famous Judie’s Restaurant. With stellar views, the light-filled apartments are centered in a small town with easy access to five major colleges, universities, and associated local businesses. Each apartment will have modern amenities and a head start to a more sustainable lifestyle. Construction is currently ongoing, with tenants scheduled to begin arriving in the first part of 2012.