Johnson County has been awarded LEED Silver certification for the GuideLink Center, which provides a crucial community resource for urgent adult mental health and substance use and overnight low-barrier shelter. The 23,500-square-foot facility was constructed and is operated sustainably. The center opened in 2021 in Iowa City and serves clients 24 hours a day.
LEED, or Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is the most widely used green building rating system in the world and an international symbol of excellence. Created by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), the LEED program recognizes design, construction and operations practices that go beyond the norm to improve environmental and human health.
The LEED Silver certification recognizes the facility’s design for 45% indoor water use reduction and 42% energy use reduction, compared to similar buildings. A biocell and landscaping provide stormwater management. Down-cast lighting reduces light pollution, while roofing and parking lot surfaces reduce the heat island effect, which means lessening how much heat radiates from the site. The site provides access to the outdoors for clients and staff. A roof-top solar array adds an additional sustainability feature.
The center was designed by Neumann Monson Architects with engineering services provided by MODUS Engineering and Hart-Frederick, commissioning by SystemWorks LLC and additional energy modeling by Willdan. Neumann Monson Architects led the LEED documentation effort with assistance from the engineering and commissioning contractors, the County’s Planning, Development and Sustainability Department, and Matt Miller, who was contracted by the County as the owner’s project lead. The facility’s general contractor was Merit Construction.
The GuideLink Center is the County’s fifth LEED-certified building. Previously certified buildings are the Health and Human Services Building (Silver), Conservation Headquarters (Gold), Conservation Maintenance Facility (Gold), and the Ambulance and Medical Examiner Facility (Gold).
AbbeHealth Services manages GuideLink Center services in partnership with local governments, nonprofits, medical centers, and others.
About the U.S. Green Building Council
The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) is committed to a healthy, resilient and equitable future for all through the development of green buildings, cities and communities. For more than 20 years, USGBC has been advancing green building practices through the development of LEED, the world’s most widely used green building program. For more information, visit usgbc.org.