LEED City Hall

River Falls City Hall is the 1st LEED Certified City Hall in Wisconsin! The City of River Falls is demonstrating its dedication to economic, environment, and human health by seeking United States Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).

  • Architect: Frisbie Architects
  • Building Construction Cost: $4,475,000
  • Construction Time: 9 months
  • Construction Year: 2009
  • Cost Per Square Foot: $167
  • General Contractor: Greystone Construction
  • Location: 222 Lewis Street, River Falls, Wisconsin
  • Project Size: 26,850 square feet

Download a Press Release (PDF) announcing LEED Silver Certification Award.

Silver Certification

The City of River Falls new City Hall, designed by Frisbie Architects, Inc. of River Falls, Wisconsin, which incorporated sustainable design principles that minimized construction waste, integrated sustainable materials, and will reduce the building’s energy and water consumption, has recently been awarded the level of silver certification by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) for its sustainable design and construction principles.

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LEED Green Building Rating System

The building is Wisconsin’s 1st LEED Silver Certified city hall designed and constructed under this program. The LEED Green Building Rating System(TM) is the nationally accepted standard for the design, construction, and operation of high-performance, environmentally-sustainable buildings. The LEED Green Building Rating System for new construction is a set of performance standards for certifying the design and construction of commercial or institutional buildings and high-rise residential buildings of all sizes, both public and private.

The intent is to promote healthful, durable, affordable, and environmentally sound practices in building design and construction. The credit-based system allows projects to earn points for environmentally friendly actions taken during construction and use of a building. Depending on the points earned, a project can attain 1 of 4 LEED certification levels: certified, silver, gold, or platinum.

Matt Frisbie, principal at Frisbie Architects said, “The citizens of River Falls can be very proud of their new building. Even with the sustainable design features, its cost per square foot is similar to other traditionally-designed buildings we’ve recently completed. The building shows that by making relatively minor adjustments in processes, materials, and systems, we can make a significant impact. Green design doesn’t have to be more expensive.”

Mayor Don Richards said,” I’ve been waiting for this certification ever since the details were submitted to the USGBC. It’s good to be mayor of the only LEED certified city hall in the State of Wisconsin. It says a lot about the progressive City Council and people we have in River Falls. Because buildings send more green house gases into the atmosphere than any other contributor, I hope this is just the beginning of a green building revolution in the city and the area.”

Project Team

The project team which consisted of a number of local design professionals included the following:

  • Mark Paschke - Architect, LEED AP, Frisbie Architects, Inc. of River Falls, Wisconsin
  • Garrett Gill - Landscape Architect, Gill Design Inc. of River Falls, Wisconsin
  • Kip Johnson - Civil Engineer, LEED AP, Auth-Consulting/ Associates of Hudson, Wisconsin
  • Dave Wagner - Structural Engineer, A.M. Structural Engineering of River Falls, Wisconsin
  • Rob Lowe - Mechanical Engineer and Commissioning Agent, Paulson and Clark Engineering, Inc. of White Bear Lake, Minnesota
  • Karl Bohnsack - Electrical Engineer, Paulson and Clark Engineering, Inc. of White Bear Lake, Minnesota
  • Rich Pelletier - Project Manager, Greystone Construction Company, of Shakopee, Minnesota

Sustainable Features

Sustainable features integrated in the design include:

  • 70% of construction waste, a total of 55 tons, was diverted from the landfill by recycling.
  • 91% of an existing building on the site and street demolition waste was recycled or re-used. That’s the equivalent of 4,003 tons.
  • High-efficiency boilers and chillers, a building automation system, and increased insulation should result in the building using 34% less energy than code requires.
  • Low-flow faucets and toilets will use 20% less water than code and will save approximately 107,000 gallons of water annually.
  • Water-efficient landscaping, including native plants and prairie grasses, will reduce water needed for irrigation and protect the Kinnickinnic River, the Class 1 Trout Stream that runs through the city and is adjacent to city hall.
  • The city will purchase 50,300 kWh, or 35% of its annual energy consumption, from renewable sources.
  • 22.8% of construction materials (by cost) contain pre-consumer and/or post-consumer recycled content.
  • 26% of construction materials (by cost) were manufactured within 500 miles of the construction site, reducing energy consumption required to deliver the products.
  • 75% of the wood used in the building came from sustainably grown forests.
  • To enhance indoor air quality, the building finishes, such as carpet and paint, are no-VOC or low-VOC (volatile organic compound) materials.

Additional Information

For more information on LEED, a directory of LEED projects, or for more green building facts, please visit the U.S Green Building website.