West Virginia scores first LEED Platinum home (photos)

West Virginia scores first LEED Platinum home (photos)

After a six-month design phase and eight months of construction, the project at 12 Faith Meadows in Williamstown, W.Va., was certified as meeting LEED Platinum requirements, the first in the state to achieve that level.

The home was designed by Charles "Chip" Pickering, a professional engineer and LEED AP and involved in Pickering Associates, a design and construction firm.

The home achieved 113 points in LEED scoring and a HERS rating of .43, compared to an average home's score of 100. The home also qualifies for an Energy Star rating with an Indoor airPLUS certification as well.

Test results

  • Blower Door 0.143 cf/sf @ 50 pa
  • Duct Blaster 0.067 cf/sf @ 25 pa

Along with the tight building envelope, the home boasts 11 kWDC of generation capacity. The solar system is located in an optimal array on the house and garage roof and the designers expect the home to generate about 50 percent of the power that it uses.

Water efficiency

  • Dual flush toilets (<1.1 gpm average flow rate)
  • Low flow faucets (EPA WaterSense) & shower heads (<1.75 gpm).

Energy & atmosphere

  • Well-based geothermal heat pump (COP 30)
  • Refrigerants use no CFCs or HCFCs
  • Structural Insulated Panels (SIPS)
  • Water heating uses heat pump via geothermal system (Five times more efficient than electric resistance heat)
  • Outdoor air ventilation system through an economizer
  • Ducted and insulated HVAC supply and return system
  • Zoned heating and cooling system

Materials & resources

  • Ceramic and recycled flooring
  • Natural fiber carpeting (bio-based polymers)
  • Low or no VOC paints and finishes
  • No urea-formaldehyde used in substrate manufacture
  • Roofing—portions vegetated or green roof
  • Roofing—recycled fiber slate roof
  • Construction waste reduction—75% of waste recycled or otherwise diverted.
  • Only FSC (Forestry Stewardship Council) certified wood
  • Insulation is recycled post-consumer paper
Sustainable Site

This photo was taken before the vegetative roof was installed on the open space on the left end of the house. 

  • Drought-tolerant turf
  • Limit irrigation demands
  • Reduce heat-island effects
  • High albedo materials & paving
  • Shading
  • Surface water management
  • Vegetated landscaping and swales
  • Non-toxic pest control


The home used SIPS for the walls and roof and efficient framing practices (24-inch stud centers) where needed.


Daylighting with skylights and clerestory windows reduces the need for interior lighting.


The vegetated roof reduces the heating load on the home, and also contributes to better air quality around the home.


The rooftop solar PV system consists of a grid of 46 panels, with 240 Watts per panel and 3.5 kW Volts DC, made by Solar Energy Solutions, LLC and uses an Enphase microinverter system.

Information and photos courtesy of Dr. Charles Pickering.

Read more about building green homes.

Topics: Building Green, Certification / LEED, Energy Star, Foundations, Geothermal Heating & Cooling, GREAT GREEN HOMES, Home Design & Plans, Lumber and Structured Panels, Photovoltaic / Solar Panels, Solar Power

Companies: U.S. Department of Energy, U.S. Green Building Council

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