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Ahern’s Landmark Milwaukee Facility Earns LEED Gold Status

Monday, June 29, 2015
Ahern Milwaukee Office

After much anticipation, Ahern’s Milwaukee office achieved Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED) Gold Certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. LEED is a best-in-class, green building certification program that recognizes sustainable building strategies and practices. To achieve certification, the building project must satisfy prerequisites and earn points to achieve different levels of certification. Ahern’s 52,000 square-foot office and shop boasts several sustainability components that helped accomplish LEED Gold, some of which include:

  • A 16,000 gallon rainwater harvesting system, using 69 percent less water than a standard building
  • A solar thermal hot water system that cut the facility’s domestic hot water heating load by more than 85 percent
  • LED exterior lighting
  • A high-efficient variant refrigerant volume (heating and cooling) system, making the building 34 percent more efficient than a code minimum building
  • A measurement and verification system that tracks energy savings and deficiencies

Additionally, general contractor CG Schmidt helped Ahern obtain LEED points for using recycled materials to build the facility (21.2 percent), diverting debris from landfills to recycling centers (78.2 percent of debris), and utilizing materials from manufacturers within a 500-mile radius of the job site (36.1 percent of all materials used). Helping Ahern with the sustainable design of the facility was Eppstein Uhen Architects (EUA), a firm focused on creating sustainable and healthy buildings. EUA collaborated with Ahern to provide design strategies and decisions that played an integral part in achieving LEED Gold.

Ahern served as the prime mechanical, and fire protection contractor for the office and shop facility that opened in January 2013. The building has been named the Association of Facility Engineers (AFE) Project of the Year and The Business Journal Commercial Project of the Year. It has also earned a Mayor’s Design Award and an AGC Build Wisconsin Award.

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