LEED Cost Does Not Have to Inflate Project Budget

August 15, 2004 · by DesignIntelligence

A recent analysis of LEED-seeking projects by Davis Langdon Adamson found no significant premium costs for using green products and practice to achieve certification.

A recent analysis of LEED-seeking projects by Davis Langdon Adamson found no significant premium costs for using green products and practice to achieve certification.

"Costing Green: A Comprehensive Cost Database and Budgeting Methodology," by Lisa Fay Matthiessen and Peter Morris of DLA breaks down the methods and costs required in pursuit of each of the seven prerequisites and 69 elective points used in LEED certification. The 27-page study focuses largely on libraries, classrooms and labs, comparing the cost-per-square-foot of 45 LEED-seeking projects with 93 others of typical construction.

"From this analysis we conclude that many projects achieve sustainable design within their initial budget, or with very small supplemental funding," they write. The study may be downloaded as a PDF from the following url:
www.dladamson.com/publications.html

It also includes guidelines for developing budgets to meet sustainability goals. However, variables such as climate, existing state regulations, and the "bidding climate," or contractor's willingness to bid on green projects can affect the budget and overall costs.

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