Alan Rindlisbacher
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Foundation Magazine


Kauai Community Federal Credit Union Receives LEED Gold Certification

Jan. 30, 2012

The Kauai Community Federal Credit Union -- Kukui Grove West Office has officially received a LEEDĀ® Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building CouncilĀ®. The two-story, 21,000-square-foot office building opened in November 2010. Layton Construction Co., Inc. was the general contractor for the project, which was designed by Group 70 International.

The facility is one of the most environmentally-sensitive projects ever built on Kauai. It is the first LEED-certified bank or credit union in all of Hawaii and the second LEED-certified building on the island of Kauai. There are only four other LEED Gold certified facilities in the state of Hawaii.

The management team took each LEED challenge to heart by using local and recycled products. The credit union was built by the local community, using mainly Hawaiian companies. The building was constructed using more than 30 percent recycled materials, more than 20 percent of which were generated within the Hawaiian Islands. The team made great efforts to reduce the steady flow of materials to the landfill by designing and implementing a waste diversion plan. Sixty-four percent of the waste generated from the project was diverted through reuse and recycling.

Some of the credit union's sustainable features include an expansive 1,000-square-foot skylight in the front lobby that provides natural daylighting and contains a special gel that blocks heat from entering the building. Natural lighting was integrated into 75 percent of the building's occupied space. Photovoltaic laminates on the facility's roof convert sunlight to electricity, and the paint finish on the roof contains a special pigment that reflects heat and reduces the building's overall heat absorption. Additionally, special landscaping features on the project site reduce and treat storm water run-off. A natural bioswale made of grass and other natural materials absorbs pollutants from storm water before they leave the site. The building's parking lot, which includes underground basement parking in a 77,000-square-foot lot, contains special parking stalls for hybrid vehicles.

"Congratulations on this achievement," Charles Kaneshiro, a principal with Group 70 International, said in an email. "Very few projects in Hawaii obtain the Gold level certification and it is a true testimony to KCFCU's commitment to the environment. It is the first credit union and first financial institution in Hawaii to obtain LEED certification on any level."

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