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LEED v4.1
New Construction
Sustainable Sites
Site Assessment

LEED CREDIT

NC-v4.1 SSc1: Site assessment 1 point

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Emily Purcell

LEED AP ND

Solomon Cordwell Buenz
Green Building Specialist

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© Copyright U.S. Green Building Council, Inc. All rights reserved.

Requirements

Complete and document a site survey or assessment1 that includes the following information: Topography.

  • Contour mapping
  • Unique topographic features
  • Slope stability risks
Hydrology.
  • Special Flood Hazard Areas (SPFHA) as determined by FEMA’s Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) (or local equivalent for projects outside the U.S.)
  • Delineated natural water bodies wetlands, lakes, streams, and shorelines (refer to U.S. EPA’s Clean Water Act or local equivalent for projects outside the U.S.)
  • Rainwater collection and reuse opportunities
  • Impervious and pervious surfaces within the site boundary
Climate.
  • Solar exposure and shading opportunities
  • Heat island effect potential
  • Seasonal sun angles
  • Prevailing winds
  • Average monthly precipitation and temperature ranges
Vegetation.
  • Primary vegetation types
  • Greenfield area
  • Significant tree mapping
  • Federal or state threatened or endangered species lists; for projects outside the U.S., International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened
Species
  • Invasive plant species listed by regional, state, or federal entities
  • EPA Level III ecoregion description (or local equivalent)
Soils.
  • Natural Resources Conservation Service soils delineation (or local equivalent for projects outside the U.S.)
  • U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service (or local equivalent for projects outside the United States) prime farmland, unique farmland, farmland of statewide importance, or farmland of local importance
  • Healthy soils
  • Previous development
  • Disturbed soils
Human use.
  • Views
  • Adjacent transportation infrastructure, bicycle network, and bicycle storage
  • Adjacent diverse uses
  • Construction materials with existing recycle or reuse potential
Human health effects.
  • Proximity of vulnerable populations
  • Adjacent physical activity opportunities
  • Proximity to major sources of air and water pollution
The survey or assessment should demonstrate the relationships between the site features and topics listed above and how these features influenced the project design; give the reasons for not addressing any of those topics.

1 Components adapted from the Sustainable Sites Initiative: Guidelines and Performance Benchmarks 2009, Prerequisite 2.1: Site Assessment.

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Addenda

4/9/2021Updated: 4/20/2021
Rating System Correction
Description of change:
Revise the below SS credit intents as follows:

SSp Construction Activity Pollution Prevention
"To reduce pollution from construction activities by controlling soil erosion, waterway sedimentation, and airborne dust that disproportionately impact frontline communities."

SSc Site Assessment
"To assess site conditions, environmental justice concerns, and cultural and social factors, before design to evaluate sustainable options and inform related decisions about site design."

SSc Rainwater Management
"To reduce runoff volume and improve water quality by replicating the natural hydrology and water balance of the site, based on historical conditions and undeveloped ecosystems in the region to avoid contributing to flooding downstream in frontline communities."

SSc Heat Island Reduction
"To minimize inequitable effects on microclimates and human, especially frontline communities, and wildlife habitats by reducing heat islands."

SSc Places of Respite
"To provide patients, all staff, and visitors with the health benefits of the natural environment by creating outdoor places of respite on the healthcare campus."

SSc Direct Exterior Access
"To provide patients, all staff, and visitors with the health benefits of the natural environment by creating outdoor places of respite on the healthcare campus."
Campus Applicable
No
Internationally Applicable:
No
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LEEDuser expert

Emily Purcell

LEED AP ND

Solomon Cordwell Buenz
Green Building Specialist

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© Copyright U.S. Green Building Council, Inc. All rights reserved.

Requirements

Complete and document a site survey or assessment1 that includes the following information: Topography.

  • Contour mapping
  • Unique topographic features
  • Slope stability risks
Hydrology.
  • Special Flood Hazard Areas (SPFHA) as determined by FEMA’s Flood Insurance Rate Map (FIRM) (or local equivalent for projects outside the U.S.)
  • Delineated natural water bodies wetlands, lakes, streams, and shorelines (refer to U.S. EPA’s Clean Water Act or local equivalent for projects outside the U.S.)
  • Rainwater collection and reuse opportunities
  • Impervious and pervious surfaces within the site boundary
Climate.
  • Solar exposure and shading opportunities
  • Heat island effect potential
  • Seasonal sun angles
  • Prevailing winds
  • Average monthly precipitation and temperature ranges
Vegetation.
  • Primary vegetation types
  • Greenfield area
  • Significant tree mapping
  • Federal or state threatened or endangered species lists; for projects outside the U.S., International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) Red List of Threatened
Species
  • Invasive plant species listed by regional, state, or federal entities
  • EPA Level III ecoregion description (or local equivalent)
Soils.
  • Natural Resources Conservation Service soils delineation (or local equivalent for projects outside the U.S.)
  • U.S. Natural Resources Conservation Service (or local equivalent for projects outside the United States) prime farmland, unique farmland, farmland of statewide importance, or farmland of local importance
  • Healthy soils
  • Previous development
  • Disturbed soils
Human use.
  • Views
  • Adjacent transportation infrastructure, bicycle network, and bicycle storage
  • Adjacent diverse uses
  • Construction materials with existing recycle or reuse potential
Human health effects.
  • Proximity of vulnerable populations
  • Adjacent physical activity opportunities
  • Proximity to major sources of air and water pollution
The survey or assessment should demonstrate the relationships between the site features and topics listed above and how these features influenced the project design; give the reasons for not addressing any of those topics.

1 Components adapted from the Sustainable Sites Initiative: Guidelines and Performance Benchmarks 2009, Prerequisite 2.1: Site Assessment.

LEEDuser expert

Emily Purcell

LEED AP ND

Solomon Cordwell Buenz
Green Building Specialist

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