This thesis studied the definition of a green building and the elements associated with the construction of single family home versus an office building. There are many rating systems available across the Country both private and public. The most well known is the LEED rating system developed by the United States Green Building Council. LEED has several rating programs now available. The eight elements of LEED for Homes are used as the basis of the research to create commonality throughout the documentation. Thirty single-family homes and office projects were examined and detailed in order to determine the aspects within each of the eight elements that define the project based on the definition of green. The elements include innovation and design, location and linkages, sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, material and resources, indoor environmental quality and awareness and education. The more significant focus in the construction projects examined is on water use and energy. This is not a surprising outcome considering the cost and availability of energy and water supplies. Perhaps there are two significant main points that the research has provided, first the education of the general public about sustainability and its impact on a global scale. The second point from the research is the need for a holistic approach to building a green structure. A holistic approach includes the design, construction and operation of the building. Often times green features are an afterthought, resulting in the green aspects not being as effective

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Sustainable architecture--Research; Sustainable buildings--Design and construction; Housing, Single family--Design and construction; Office buildings--Design and construction

Publication Date


Document Type


Department, Program, or Center

Civil Engineering Technology Environmental Management and Safety (CAST)


MacEnroe, Paul

Advisor/Committee Member

Thomas, George


Note: imported from RIT’s Digital Media Library running on DSpace to RIT Scholar Works. Physical copy available through RIT's The Wallace Library at: NA2542.36 .Z44 2008


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