Chicago Green Building rules

dpu1.png[DePaul's new LEED Gold theater school/photo by Jeff Goldberg]

Chicago may not be winning any awards or making any lists for tall building construction right now, however the State of Illinois is making big leaps towards "green" building certification. Today, the US Green Building Council (USGBC) released its list of the top ten states with the most LEED-certified spaces per capita, and Illinois takes the number one spot. The ranking is a little confusing as other states like New York and California have more overall LEED certified buildings and space than Chicago, but since the list organizes city by most certified space per capita, Illinois takes the number one spot with its 171 projects at 24.5 million square feet of LEED space in 2013. Just a few weeks ago, Mayor Emanuel joined a coalition of other city leaders to fight waste from tall buildings, as they are the number one polluter in Chicago. Some of the notable LEED buildings the Chicago area brought on board in 2013 were Powell Elementary School, the llinois Holocaust Museum in Skokie, Lincoln Hall at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and of course the DePaul Theater School.

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[One possible rendering of how Chicago plans to get cleaner skies]

Chicago plans to join nine other cities in saying "Stop the pollution!" from its single largest offender: tall buildings. The City Energy Project, organized by former New York City Mayor and billionaire Michael Bloomberg, wants tall buildings in America's largest cities to clean up their act. Chicago's buildings account for 71 percent of the city's green house emissions. By making tall buildings more efficient, not only will Chicagoans breathe cleaner air, but the city expects to save $134 million annually. At least New Yorkers and Chicagoans can find one thing they can all agree on: that clean air and efficient buildings are a win win.

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Why are all buildings in Chicago lighted green and red?

A lot of the buildings do it around the holidays, or for any holiday really. You will notice some orange on halloween. green on St pats day, and so on.