Hitchcock's Innovative LEED Point
|We're very good at saying when building's achieve LEED status but realized we knew little of what that meant. Solution: Visit the nation's first LEED-Silver hospital, Rush University Hospital. We asked the building's landscape architects Hitchcock Design Group about its methods. Thus we were introduced to . . .below-grade planters?|
Hitchcock's Geoff Roehll (here with colleague Jackie Loewe) created streetside planters lowered into the ground, rather than raised above, so dust and debris flow through the grate into specially mixed soil acting as a filter. With especially hearty plants, the planters are irrigated almost entirely through rainwater, or water condensed off the building chillers and piped in.
A more traditional contribution is the green roof, this one built over a parking garage and underground tunnel system big enough for multiple semis to turn around; it allows medical supplies to be delivered while keeping the street free for emergency vehicles. The green roof also gives patients a place to relax after procedures. Hitchcock designed another, which will be installed on the sixth floor of the Atrium Building as it is constructed.