By Kimberley Molina
Although construction on the new fire hall in Fort St. John will probably not begin until next spring, there could be an important change to its classification.
The Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Certification Policy, passed by the City last year, was to ensure that newly constructed municipal buildings would be designed to reuse and recycle building materials and minimize the overall impact on the environment by creating more sustainable buildings.
Dan Davies said he does not want to repeal the policy but wants to build the fire hall to the standards of LEED without having to spend the extra money to have the building officially certified.
The councillor put forward a motion- which was passed – to amend the policy to exclude the requirement of having a building officially certified but to allow for shadowing of the LEED process.
â€œI still think we want to take leadership in this community to build environmentally green buildings.â€
Bruce Lantz said that because the LEED standards are public, the city can simply make sure the standards are met when constructing a new building.
The Mayor said LEED certification would cost approximately $100,000 and that shadowing the construction process is allowed by the organization. The shadowing process means that the building would still be built to the LEED standards, but would not go through the official certification process.
â€œIn the interest of saving people $100,000 or so every time we build a new building, this just makes total sense.â€ However, Lantz added that since certification would not be completed that â€œitâ€™s incumbent on the city to make sure we donâ€™t miss any steps.â€
The new fire hall will be built to accommodate more modern equipment, to act as a command centre if there is an emergency, and will have a type of backup communications system if power goes out in the city.