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Contact: Diana Peeples, diana.peeples@dshs.wa.gov
August 23, 2013
Green Hill School gets LEED Silver Certification

Diana Peeples, (360)902-8347

Green Hill School gets LEED Silver Certification

CHEHALIS – The new Acute Residential Mental Health Unit at Green Hill School recently received the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) Silver Certification. State law requires buildings of more than 5,000 square feet to be built to LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design), commonly known as "green building" specifications.  

To receive a Silver Certification, projects must meet rigorous building USGBC standards by using less energy, water and natural resources; generating less waste; and minimizing effects on the land, when compared to traditional construction. Standards also include access to public transportation and amenities; extra insulation that keeps the interior at a constant temperature; materials to be re-used and recycled during construction; and rigorous measurement and verification of energy use.

"What is unusual about this project is that it is a juvenile detention center," said Project Manager Diana Peeples. It is one of two such centers operated by DSHS to have received the LEED Silver Certification. The other is Echo Glen Children’s Center in Snoqualmie, another Juvenile Justice and Rehabilitation Administration facility.

Construction started on the $4.5 million project in October 2011, due to the mandated closing of Maple Lane School, another state facility for juvenile offenders, Peeples said. Before construction, Green Hill did not have a program or facilities for individuals with acute mental health needs. This new 10,100-square-foot building supports 16 single-bed rooms and three beds for residents that need to be separated for some period of time from the rest of the youths.

While the objective is to save energy with efficient systems, Peeples said other features, including sound-absorbing construction materials, bright paint colors and natural light, all help to create a positive atmosphere for residents and staff.

Green Hill School, located in Chehalis, is a medium/maximum security facility that provides older juvenile male offenders with education and vocational training, therapy and behavioral treatment programs.

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