Posted on April 27, 2012KMclaughlin

Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital Awarded Prestigious LEED Gold Certification from the U.S. Green Building Council

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich, April 20, 2012 – Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital recently received LEED Gold certification by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). LEED is the USGBC’s leading rating system for designing and constructing the world’s greenest, most energy efficient, and high performing buildings.

Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital is the only hospital in the state to be awarded Gold certification and one of just two dedicated children’s hospitals in the nation to achieve this designation. There are only 25 hospitals in the United States that currently hold LEED Gold certification, the second highest designation a hospital or building can attain.

“We are very proud to be recognized by the USGBC,” said Bob Connors, MD, president, Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital. “Conserving environmental resources while creating the best healing environment for patients and their families was an important goal for this project.”

Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital worked with URS Corporation, Turner Construction and Wolverine Building Group to design and build the new children’s hospital to achieve LEED certification for energy use, lighting, water and material use as well as incorporating a variety of other sustainable design elements.

LEED Gold certification was based on a number of green design and construction
features including.

  • Reduced water use through low flow plumbing fixtures, and high efficiency irrigation
  • Energy savings from high performance building envelope, heat recovery, HVAC, and lighting design and controls
  • Reduced impact on environment through use of regional products and products containing recycled content
  • Healthy indoor environment through selection and use of materials that minimize emission of indoor air contaminants

“Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital was committed to creating a sustainable facility,” said David Byl, senior project manager of URS. “The team of URS, Spectrum Health, and Wolverine/Turner was challenged to provide a LEED certified facility. Our initial goal of LEED certification was far surpassed by achieving LEED Gold. This recognition is a reflection of our dedication to sustainable design, construction, and operations.”

“LEED projects are both challenging and rewarding.” states Steve Berlage, Vice President and General Manager for Turner Construction Company in Michigan. “Construction waste management and indoor air quality are areas that require precise focus. Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital is the 94th LEED Gold project built by Turner Construction Company. The entire team was able to recycle 94 percent of the construction waste and debris. That’s an amazing 16,000 tons that did not go into to our local landfills.”

“Having Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital achieve LEED Gold status is a fitting tribute to the work put into this building by local tradesmen and designers. We all worked very hard to get it right, said Tim Gray, superintendent of Wolverine Building Group. “Having Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital achieve this certification is something Wolverine is very proud of. A lot of effort goes into a LEED Project.”

The new hospital dramatically changed the skyline on Michigan Street’s “Medical Mile” in Grand Rapids and is changing health care for children. Supported by nearly $103 million in generous community support, special features of a 440,000 square foot, 212 bed and 14 story hospital include:

  • A child-friendly atmosphere designed to make kids feel comfortable and safe
  • A healing environment celebrating the region’s natural beauty of water, land, sky and sun
  • An outdoor garden accessible from the main lobby
  • Spacious, private inpatient rooms where parents may stay overnight
  • An expanded neonatal center with 40 private rooms
  • A 24-bed pediatric critical care unit for critically ill and injured children
  • An emergency department and operating and recovery rooms just for children
  • A pediatric heart catheterization laboratory and pediatric radiology department with the latest diagnostic imaging technology
  • Room to play and entertainment to foster healing and hope
  • Quiet spaces and a chapel for all faiths

Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, a member of Spectrum Health, is a Grand Rapids based hospital serving children throughout Michigan. A teaching hospital, it includes nearly 200 pediatric physicians with training in providing medical and surgical care to children in more than 40 pediatric specialties. A new 440,000 square foot hospital opened in January 2011 designed specifically with children and families in mind. Visit to learn more.