LEED Certification

Caterpillar atriumBuilding a green museum

When The Strong® expanded in 2006, it used recycled materials, designed high-efficiency mechanical systems, bought local products, and took other steps to reduce the environmental impact of the 114,000-square-foot addition—which brought the total physical plant to 282,000 square feet. In recognition of the institution’s environmentally-friendly efforts, the Green Building Program awarded The Strong a Silver Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification rating, making it the largest Rochester site to receive such a prestigious award.

What is LEED certification?

The United States Green Building Council’s LEED rating system promotes buildings that are environmentally responsible and healthy places to live and work. The LEED program is voluntary and follows the entire construction process, from start to finish. The Strong achieved the Silver designation by earning more than 32 points on the rigorous LEED scale.

What is required for LEED certification?

What does it take to make an environmentally-friendly building and earn a Silver LEED certification rating? A lot! Here are just a few of the things that The Strong did to help the earth and receive this prestigious honor:


The Strong used steel, concrete, insulation, ceiling tiles, carpeting, and other products made from recycled materials. More recycled content meant fewer new, raw materials had to be mined, made, or manufactured.

Buying local

Locally-produced products don’t need to travel as far. That saves gas and cuts pollution. The Strong bought more than 40 percent of its products from within a 500-mile radius.

Cleaning green

Environmentally-friendly cleaning products that reduce everyone’s exposure to potentially hazardous chemical contaminants are used building wide.

Reducing light pollution

Too many bright building lights can make it hard to see the stars and moon. Carefully chosen exterior and interior lighting minimize how much light spills into the night sky.

Keeping cool

Buildings often warm the climate more than wild areas. To reduce this heat island effect, The Strong installed an Energy Star compliant, highly-reflective roof. The white roof is a cool roof. 

Saving energy

This big building uses a lot less energy than others its size. Highly-efficient heating, cooling, and electrical systems reduce energy consumption by 40 percent.

Protecting the ozone layer

CFCs (chlorofluorocarbons) destroy the ozone layer. The Strong installed heating, ventilating, air conditioning, and refrigeration systems that do not use any CFC-based refrigerants.

Maintaining clean air

Good indoor air makes a building healthier. The Strong keeps the air clean by using carpets that exceed the requirements of the Green Label Indoor Air Quality Test Program and adhesives, sealants, and paints that emit few volatile organic chemicals. Also, there’s no smoking in the building or on The Strong’s grounds.