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Leo Urban, Landscape Architect and LEED AP BD+C of Urban Associates Inc. is happy to announce that the Administration and Visitor Center at the Solid Waste Authority, Waste to Energy Facility located in West Palm Beach, Florida is officially certified LEED Platinum by the USGBC.

Urban Associates, Inc. as a sub-consultant to CDM Smith was directly responsible for obtaining (10) certification credits five of which were awarded for “Sustainable Site Development” for protecting and restoring habitat, maximizing open Space and Reducing roof and non-roof heat island effect. An additional (5) credits were awarded under the category of “Water Efficient Landscaping” for the use of native landscaping and non-potable water collected from the roof and stored in a cistern and used for irrigation.

Other sustainable design solutions designed by Mr. Urban include the first constructed 8” to 14” depth intensive green roof constructed in a tropical climate using native coastal Perennials and shrubs. The design included directing the first flush runoff from the non-green portion of the roof to a rain garden to provide stormwater quantity and quality treatment.

Mr. Urban designed a water efficient landscape and low water use irrigation system using smart controllers, soil probes and water use monitoring system. The water monitoring system included a wireless computer gateway that provides water use data remotely to his computer and to the landscape management company. In addition, he designed a permeable paver courtyard with a stone reservoir to reduce stormwater runoff, increase stormwater quality and to replenish the groundwater aquifer.

A 16’ height “greenscreen” structures planted with Jasmine was constructed along the west face of the building to reduce the heat island effect from the afternoon sun.

CDM Smith was under contract with KBR to provide engineering & construction services for this first of its kind waste to energy facility to be constructed in the USA. Mr. Urban worked with the project team at the proposal stage preparing graphics and innovative design solutions and competed regionally and nationally for this contract. Mr. Urban continues to serve as an advocate for low cost, low impact development, environmental and energy efficient solutions on all of his projects.