LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. In a special ceremony in the council chambers on Oct. 23, Mayor Shelley Stanczyk and other members of the council, village manager Ron Williams and other staff embers as well as invited guests celebrated the achievement.
“This major accomplishment demonstrates that Palmetto Bay is a shining example of not just what a community can do together, but what a community should do together,” Mayor Stanczyk said. “And that is lead by example, promote smart, efficient, sustainable development and healthier interior spaces, and be responsible stewards of this fragile planet.
Stanczyk mentioned that their first step toward smart green-design was the new concession stand at Coral Reef Park, which was the first LEEDcertified public facility in Miami- Dade County. She said that the village hall plans began years earlier.
“Under the leadership of then-mayor Eugene Flinn, I joined my fellow village council members in forging a firm commitment to go ‘all-out’ green with the design and construction of the Palmetto Bay Municipal Center.”
The facility has one of the largest solar-panel arrays in all of Miami- Dade County, with low-energy, lowcost LED fixtures supplying 95 per- cent of all lighting needs; xeriscape landscaping and a low consumption drip-irrigation system; a 40,000-gallon cistern for landscape irrigation and a 20,000-gallon cistern for restroom fixtures; interior glass walls that maximize daylight inside; variable- refrigerant AC system of 36 independent units operating individually and ondemand; occupancy sensors for lighting and exhaust fans; a solar water-heater system; permeable pavers for water collection, and a set of free electric-car charging stations.
Former Mayor Eugene Flinn said he was very pleased to see all the effort that went into the project that began on his watch and was completed before he left office finally acknowledged.“It’s recognition of a job well done,” Flinn said. “We started out on this village hall; we went through a very long process; we involved committees; we involved the public.
“It culminated not just in gold, but in platinum certification. It’s going to mean savings in the future; it’s going to mean a building that doesn’t go obsolete, that sets the standard. This is the final recognition. I’m so proud of staff that really worked hard to get it to where it is today.”
Invited guest U.S. Rep Ileana Ros- Lehtinen praised it as a state-of-the art building that truly is a vision of sustainability, built from recycled materials, that reduces waste, noise and light pollution, and creates a healthier and safer atmosphere for those who work within the facility.
“Today is the recognition of the Village of Palmetto Bay’s commitment to build a better future and a commitment to serve as a model for our nation by working development and environmentally sound building strategies,” Ros-Lehtinen said.
“Everyone here today and the more than 23.000 residents who call Palmetto Bay home can boast that this is the first Platinum LEED Certified municipal center in the state of Florida, in the Southeastern United States, and most impressively, 11th highest LEED ranked building in the world. And to think that it was done right here in ‘the little village that could.’”
The center scored an impressive 83 out of the 110 in the LEED rating system scale, with a perfect score for innovation and exceptional ratings for energy efficiency.
Miami-Dade Commissioner Lynda Bell applauded the efforts of the village council for leading the way and for achieving what they had in a relatively short period of time.
“This is a great day for the Village of Palmetto Bay,” Bell said. “Government leaders at all levels of government must find innovative ways to utilize alternative energy sources and make the most of what we have.”
Steve Rollin, project engineer of TLC Engineering for Architects, concluded the remarks by listing all the buildings’ innovative features and praising the teamwork that made it happen.
“We, as a staff, are proud of this building, and as a proud resident, I am happy to say that the timing to build this was perfect,” Rollin said. “By comparison this is the least expensive village hall in all of Miami-Dade County. Yet, its design, impressive features and functionality are second to none.
“Fewer than 3 percent of all registered projects achieve this rating. To have accomplished this is a testament to the determination of the council — both past and present, the determination of our village manager, the design-build team of Current Builders and JMWAArchitects, TLC for Engineering for Architects and a dedicated staff.”