Thomas Secures Idaho’s First LEED for Homes Platinum Certifications

Thomas Development Co. obtained LEED for Homes Platinum certification for its new Rosslare Senior Apartments and Cardona Senior Apartments properties.

The green multifamily scene in Idaho just got greener. Thomas Development Co. recently obtained the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED for Homes Platinum certification for its new Rosslare Senior Apartments and Cardona Senior Apartments properties. The multifamily communities’ platinum designations, the highest achievable, constitute a first for the state of Idaho.

“We decided to seek USGBC’s LEED for Homes certification because the third-party certification system was the most arduous, compared to self-certification options,” Thomas C. Mannschreck, president of Thomas Development, tells MHN.

Rosslare, located at 1085 Hoopes Avenue in Idaho Falls, encompasses 48 one- and two-bedroom residences and such amenities as a central community center with a library, exercise facility, craft room and business center. The property is the second multifamily development in the state to earn LEED for Homes Platinum status; Cardona was the first. Situated at 4856 Hawthorne Road in Chubbuck, Cardona also features 48 units, as well as the same amenities offered at Rosslare.

Both properties were designed by the architectural firm of Glancey Rockwell & Associates and include the same green elements that paved the road to LEED certification. Thomas Development, the designer, general contractor Pacific West Construction Inc. and the rest of the construction group concentrated on the incorporation of green practices and features from the very beginning of both development endeavors. During construction, the team monitored waste management and instituted reuse and recycling methods. Additionally, through structural analysis and the use of advanced framing techniques, framing costs were ultimately approximately $128,000 less than costs incurred when relying on traditional methods. “It is very clear in the overall multifamily industry that more energy-efficient and environmentally friendly construction techniques are gong to be required,” Mannschreck notes.

The green theme at Rosslare and Cardona continues with the employment of drought-tolerant plants, drip irrigation and energy-efficient windows, and extends to the interior, too. Residences contain high-efficiency water-conserving plumbing fixtures, fluorescent light fixtures and Energy Star-rated appliances, all of which has resulted in the units’ surpassing energy-code performance requirements by over 30 percent.

While the USGBC’s LEED for Homes designation is also available at the silver and gold levels, Thomas Development plans to continue to aim for the top. “We are currently building Summerhill Apartments in Idaho Falls, and we will submit for LEED Platinum certification there,” he says. “We expect to achieve LEED Platinum certification for all our new construction projects.”