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Solar Access to Green Space

LEED CREDIT

Pilot-Credits SSpc121: Solar Access to Green Space 1 point

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Credit language

USGBC logo

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

Intent

To minimize the obstruction of sunlight and contamination of air by the built environment for both the vegetation and occupants in public parks and green spaces surrounding the project.

Requirements

Preserve Sunlight and Fresh Air to Surrounding Public Parks and Green Space Demonstrate through computer modeling that the annual sun hours in the darkest occupiable location of the surrounding affected public parks or green spaces achieved by the proposed envelope is at least 3 times the hours in same location under the baseline case. Ensure that no building exhaust terminations and openings face directly towards the surrounding public parks or green spaces. Additionally, given the building height above the public assembly or green space and the width of the surrounding affected public assembly or green space, exceed the baseline average daily hours of full sun obtained at the level of the public space for the applicable height/width category as per table 1 below.

Building height as a function of public space width Average hours of full sun obtained at public space level (per day)
0.5x Width Height < 1.0x Width 2h 36m
1.0x Width Height < 2.0x Width 1h 10m
2.0x Width Height < 2.5x Width 1h 00m
2.5x Width Height < 3.0x Width 0h 47m
3.0x Width Height < 4.0x Width 0h 41m
4.0x Width Height < 5.0x Width 0h 34m
5.0x Width Height < 6.0x Width 0h 30m
6.0x Width Height 0h 27m
Table 1 – Baseline Average Daily Hours of Full Sun
The surrounding affected public park, assembly space or green space is defined as any exterior vegetated area and its associated circulation paths that are located inside the longest shadow cast by the baseline building during the local growing season. The exterior vegetated area and its associated circulation paths must at least be partially accessible to the public to qualify for this credit. The darkest occupiable location is defined as the space within surrounding affected public park, assembly space or green space (public or not public) which receives the least amount of annual sun-hours.. The proposed building’s geographic location, envelope and massing in the daylight model shall be identical to those of the project building. The baseline building’s geographic location in the daylight model shall be identical to those of the project building. The baseline building’s massing and envelope in the daylight model shall be as follows depending on local zoning ordinances of the project site: Projects must meet the following criteria to be eligible for this credit:
  1. Project must be close enough (or directly adjacent) to an existing public or non-public green space so that a portion of the regularly occupied public park, assembly space or other green space area falls within the shadow created by the proposed building.
  2. Proposed project site must have a net FAR ≥ 3.
  3. Project must achieve the following:
  4. v2009 SSc2 – Development Density and Community Connectivity AND v2009 SSc4.1 – Alternative Transportation – Public Transportation, or
  5. 2 points under v4 LTc Surrounding Density and Diverse Uses, Option 1. Surrounding Density AND v4 LTc Access to Quality Transit
For sites with local zoning requirements:
  • The edge of the envelope shall be along the edge of the largest contiguous development area within the LEED Boundary (including both the project building footprint, and any hardscape areas).
  • Building setbacks as per local zoning regulations must be followed throughout.
  • The massing shall be of a standard rectangular shape such that total floor area remains identical to the building footprint for every floor (including the roof)
  • The height shall be such that the maximum allowable FAR (floor-area-ratio) as per local zoning regulations is achieved.
For sites with no local zoning requirements:
  • The edge of the envelope shall be along the edge of the largest contiguous development area within the LEED Boundary (including both the project building footprint, and any hardscape areas). The building footprint cannot be larger than double the area of the proposed building footprint.
  • The massing shall be of a standard rectangular shape such that total floor area remains identical to the building footprint for every floor (including the roof).
  • The height shall be such that total interior area of the baseline building is equal to the total interior area of the proposed building.
The project team may pursue additional strategies beyond altering the building envelope, massing, and location to meet the daylight increase requirements. Any additional strategies must be fully documented and included a reasonable baseline case in order to count towards credit compliance. For example: A project team wishes to incorporate parallel fenestration to allow daylight to pass through a building and reach the adjacent green space. In order to achieve credit compliance using this additional strategy, the baseline building model must include fenestration as well. The baseline window to wall ratio would be set to the ASHRAE 90.1 maximum based on the proposed building type and project’s climate zone.

Submittals

General
Register for the pilot credit Credits 116-125
Required Documentation
Documentation Project with local zoning requirements Project without local zoning requirements
Dated documentation demonstrating that the sunlight on the site was studied and that the proposed building was altered during early stage design to meet credit requirements. The documentation can be one of the following:
  • The Integrative Process Worksheet submitted for the Integrative Process Credit which includes sunlight studies and design impacts.
  • The site survey submitted for the Site Assessment Credit which includes illumination from sunlight and a separate narrative of the design impacts.
  • Dated report of the sunlight study and summary of building design changes results from the study.
  • Dated Owner’s Project Requirements, design meeting minutes, and revisions to the Basis of Design document addressing the design intents and changes related to sunlight on the site.
X X
Site plan of the project showing the LEED Boundary and the baseline building envelope X X
Land survey or satellite image identifying both the project site and the surrounding public assembly, park or green area that is affected by the longest shadow cast by the project building during the local growing season X X
Daylight simulation sun-hours results for the baseline building X X
Daylight simulation sun-hours results for the proposed building demonstrating the increase in sun-hours X X
Land survey or satellite image showing the space width of the surrounding affected public parks or green spaces and elevations of the project demonstrating the full building height above the affected public parks or green spaces X X
Summary or excerpts of applicable local zoning regulations X
Narrative to addresses how the project’s proposed building design favorably compares to the code required setbacks X
Mechanical floor plans demonstrating that no exhaust openings directly face any adjacent green space or public parks. X X
Changes
  • 10/13/2017 - original publication
See all forum discussions about this credit »

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Documentation toolkit

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LEEDuser’s Documentation Toolkit is loaded with calculators to help assess credit compliance, tracking spreadsheets for materials, sample templates to help guide your narratives and LEED Online submissions, and examples of actual submissions from certified LEED projects for you to check your work against. To get your plaque, start with the right toolkit.

USGBC logo

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

Intent

To minimize the obstruction of sunlight and contamination of air by the built environment for both the vegetation and occupants in public parks and green spaces surrounding the project.

Requirements

Preserve Sunlight and Fresh Air to Surrounding Public Parks and Green Space Demonstrate through computer modeling that the annual sun hours in the darkest occupiable location of the surrounding affected public parks or green spaces achieved by the proposed envelope is at least 3 times the hours in same location under the baseline case. Ensure that no building exhaust terminations and openings face directly towards the surrounding public parks or green spaces. Additionally, given the building height above the public assembly or green space and the width of the surrounding affected public assembly or green space, exceed the baseline average daily hours of full sun obtained at the level of the public space for the applicable height/width category as per table 1 below.

Building height as a function of public space width Average hours of full sun obtained at public space level (per day)
0.5x Width Height < 1.0x Width 2h 36m
1.0x Width Height < 2.0x Width 1h 10m
2.0x Width Height < 2.5x Width 1h 00m
2.5x Width Height < 3.0x Width 0h 47m
3.0x Width Height < 4.0x Width 0h 41m
4.0x Width Height < 5.0x Width 0h 34m
5.0x Width Height < 6.0x Width 0h 30m
6.0x Width Height 0h 27m
Table 1 – Baseline Average Daily Hours of Full Sun
The surrounding affected public park, assembly space or green space is defined as any exterior vegetated area and its associated circulation paths that are located inside the longest shadow cast by the baseline building during the local growing season. The exterior vegetated area and its associated circulation paths must at least be partially accessible to the public to qualify for this credit. The darkest occupiable location is defined as the space within surrounding affected public park, assembly space or green space (public or not public) which receives the least amount of annual sun-hours.. The proposed building’s geographic location, envelope and massing in the daylight model shall be identical to those of the project building. The baseline building’s geographic location in the daylight model shall be identical to those of the project building. The baseline building’s massing and envelope in the daylight model shall be as follows depending on local zoning ordinances of the project site: Projects must meet the following criteria to be eligible for this credit:
  1. Project must be close enough (or directly adjacent) to an existing public or non-public green space so that a portion of the regularly occupied public park, assembly space or other green space area falls within the shadow created by the proposed building.
  2. Proposed project site must have a net FAR ≥ 3.
  3. Project must achieve the following:
  4. v2009 SSc2 – Development Density and Community Connectivity AND v2009 SSc4.1 – Alternative Transportation – Public Transportation, or
  5. 2 points under v4 LTc Surrounding Density and Diverse Uses, Option 1. Surrounding Density AND v4 LTc Access to Quality Transit
For sites with local zoning requirements:
  • The edge of the envelope shall be along the edge of the largest contiguous development area within the LEED Boundary (including both the project building footprint, and any hardscape areas).
  • Building setbacks as per local zoning regulations must be followed throughout.
  • The massing shall be of a standard rectangular shape such that total floor area remains identical to the building footprint for every floor (including the roof)
  • The height shall be such that the maximum allowable FAR (floor-area-ratio) as per local zoning regulations is achieved.
For sites with no local zoning requirements:
  • The edge of the envelope shall be along the edge of the largest contiguous development area within the LEED Boundary (including both the project building footprint, and any hardscape areas). The building footprint cannot be larger than double the area of the proposed building footprint.
  • The massing shall be of a standard rectangular shape such that total floor area remains identical to the building footprint for every floor (including the roof).
  • The height shall be such that total interior area of the baseline building is equal to the total interior area of the proposed building.
The project team may pursue additional strategies beyond altering the building envelope, massing, and location to meet the daylight increase requirements. Any additional strategies must be fully documented and included a reasonable baseline case in order to count towards credit compliance. For example: A project team wishes to incorporate parallel fenestration to allow daylight to pass through a building and reach the adjacent green space. In order to achieve credit compliance using this additional strategy, the baseline building model must include fenestration as well. The baseline window to wall ratio would be set to the ASHRAE 90.1 maximum based on the proposed building type and project’s climate zone.

Submittals

General
Register for the pilot credit Credits 116-125
Required Documentation
Documentation Project with local zoning requirements Project without local zoning requirements
Dated documentation demonstrating that the sunlight on the site was studied and that the proposed building was altered during early stage design to meet credit requirements. The documentation can be one of the following:
  • The Integrative Process Worksheet submitted for the Integrative Process Credit which includes sunlight studies and design impacts.
  • The site survey submitted for the Site Assessment Credit which includes illumination from sunlight and a separate narrative of the design impacts.
  • Dated report of the sunlight study and summary of building design changes results from the study.
  • Dated Owner’s Project Requirements, design meeting minutes, and revisions to the Basis of Design document addressing the design intents and changes related to sunlight on the site.
X X
Site plan of the project showing the LEED Boundary and the baseline building envelope X X
Land survey or satellite image identifying both the project site and the surrounding public assembly, park or green area that is affected by the longest shadow cast by the project building during the local growing season X X
Daylight simulation sun-hours results for the baseline building X X
Daylight simulation sun-hours results for the proposed building demonstrating the increase in sun-hours X X
Land survey or satellite image showing the space width of the surrounding affected public parks or green spaces and elevations of the project demonstrating the full building height above the affected public parks or green spaces X X
Summary or excerpts of applicable local zoning regulations X
Narrative to addresses how the project’s proposed building design favorably compares to the code required setbacks X
Mechanical floor plans demonstrating that no exhaust openings directly face any adjacent green space or public parks. X X
Changes
  • 10/13/2017 - original publication
See all LEEDuser forum discussions about this credit » Subscribe to new discussions about Pilot-Credits SSpc121