The new Unity Care Northwest Medical Center located in Ferndale, WA, featured both sustainable building construction methods and a low impact development(LID) site design that was awarded LEED certification. LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is the most widely used green building rating system in the world. It was developed, and is managed, by the U.S. Green Building Council. LID, or green infrastructure, refers to systems and practices that use or mimic natural processes that result in the infiltration, and/or evapotranspiration, of stormwater in order to protect water quality and associated aquatic habitat.
On the Unity Care project, 2020 ENGINEERING’s LID stormwater design included pervious concrete pavement and permeable pavers for all parking and walkway areas. This permeable system provides 100% infiltration of the rainwater that falls on the parking surfaces. The runoff from the roof area is directed into bioretention (raingarden) landscapes that serve as infiltration galleries. This cost-effective site design eliminates expensive stormwater infrastructure typical of conventional stormwater designs, such as catch basins, stormwater piping, and underground detention vaults.
The LID stormwater design conceived by 2020 also met LEED Sustainable Sitesgoals. The light-reflective pervious concrete surface addresses the heat island effect that occurs with conventional asphalt pavement surfaces. 2020 also helped the project achieve certification by scoring points in the LEED Water Efficiency and Innovation categories.