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CIA Goes Green: New Campus Helps LEED the Way

The CIA’s newest campus in Northern Virginia represents the Agency’s most ambitious effort to date to create a state-of-the-art work environment with a design that focuses on “green” principles. The design is so effective that the campus buildings have earned certification under the U.S. Green Building Council’s prestigious Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System.

The first office building, which opened its doors in 2007, earned LEED Silver certification, while the visitor center and central plant each earned LEED Gold certification. New construction can earn one of four LEED ratings – certified, silver, gold, or platinum. The campus houses 25 percent of all LEED Gold certified buildings in the state of Virginia.

The second office building is currently under construction.

To earn LEED certification, the buildings performed well in five key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, indoor environmental quality, and materials selection.

Sustainable Site Development

  • Comprehensive mass transportation program
  • Preferred parking for low emitting and fuel efficient vehicles and carpools
  • Bike racks
  • Public transportation to site
  • Enhanced stormwater management
    • Quality and quantity control
  • Vegetated roof
    • 22,000 square foot vegetated roof

Water Savings

  • Over 40% potable water savings
    • Low-flow water closets
    • Water efficient faucets and showerheads
    • Waterless urinals
    • Native landscaping at central plant


Energy Efficiency

  • Over 21% energy savings
    • Occupancy sensors
    • Daylight and tasklights
    • Energy efficient appliances and equipment
  • Building commissioning
  • 100% renewable energy certificates for visitor center


Indoor Environmental Quality

  • 60% more fresh air supply
  • Carbon dioxide monitors to provide fresh air when necessary
  • Individual lighting controls and extensive outdoor views for occupants
  • Low-emitting materials: paints, carpet, systems furniture, sealants, wood
  • Green housekeeping program
  • Indoor air quality
    • During construction management
    • Before occupancy testing


Materials Selection

  • Over 50% construction waste diversion from landfill
  • Over 20% recycled content in building materials
  • Extensive use of building materials from regional sources
  • Recycling for building


As a result of these features, the buildings consume about 21 percent less energy and 40 percent less water, provide healthier indoor work environments, and have less of an overall environmental impact than comparable buildings of the same size and use.

“The first building is an ecologically sensitive building - reducing our impact on the global environment while improving the quality of the workspace for the individual,” said Camille Hersh, chief of CIA’s Facilities. “The CIA has taken great care in creating a comfortable workplace that fosters efficiency and collaboration while respecting our natural resources.”


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Posted: Jan 24, 2008 08:11 AM
Last Updated: Apr 30, 2013 12:01 PM