Monterey County Weekly Building Obtains LEED Platinum Rating

Seaside, CA – The US Green Business Council certified the Monterey County Weekly Building as LEED PLATINUM: EXISTING BUILDING, the first existing commercial building to obtain the USGBC’s highest designation in Monterey County (and tri-county area). LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, and it’s the leading international standard in green construction and retrofitting.

The Monterey County Weekly Building was the first commercial office building designed by architect Charles Moore, whose illustrious career led to the American Institute of Architects’ Gold Medal Lifetime Achievement Award (1993), the 49th architect to be recognized at that top level.

The LEED certification process was a 15-month exercise in tedious data gathering punctuated by the occasional building improvements. The building obtained the Platinum level with 80 points. In 2007, 163 solar panels were installed on the roof to provide clean solar power to meet virtually all the electrical needs of the 30-person newsmedia office. That was a critical step towards LEED and ensured the building obtained the highest Energy Star rating.

The improvements during the LEED process included installation of more energy efficient lighting (fixtures and LED bulbs), new furnaces (with more BTU’s and cleaner emissions), new toilets and faucet emitters to reduce the water usage to the lowest levels possible, improved air quality, use of green materials in any construction/repairs (e.g. zero VOC paints when the building was repainted), reduction of garbage output, and a simultaneous increase in recycling.

A story published in this week’s edition Monterey County Weekly is a full examination of the LEED process the Weekly went through with consultants from Building Wise.

Bradley Zeve, Founder & CEO of Monterey County Weekly, commented, “It was an arduous, highly detailed and sometimes frustrating process, and in the end I’m pleased we both went through LEED and achieved Platinum. Not only is our building more energy efficient, and not only did we educate the community and offer leadership about green building practices, but on a personal level our building is much more comfortable for all staff. That’s an outright win-win.”

Barry Giles, Building Wise Founder & CEO, added, “Navigating the LEED process through existing buildings can be a difficult process but the support from all members of the team at Monterey County Weekly helped drive the process forward. The Weekly‘s remarkable achievement finally puts to rest the comments that only big city center buildings can get LEED certified. Monterey County Weekly has led the field and the accolade of Platinum is truly deserved.”