Construction & Demolition Recycling (07/07/16)
A new Miami Beach, Fla., law requires contractors of buildings larger than 7,000 square feet to meet LEED specifications or pay a fee that is equal to 5 percent of the construction costs. The law, enacted April 1, requires contractors to build structures that use less energy and water. New structures larger than 7,000 square feet also must be LEED Gold certified, while LEED Silver certification is required for new buildings larger than 50,000 square feet. The 5-percent fee was based on estimates of how much it normally costs builders to achieve a LEED certification. LEED Gold or Platinum buildings do not have to pay a fee, while the fee for LEED Silver structures is about 3 percent. The city wants to build a fund specifically for sustainability projects such as building permeable pavements and improving the beach's tree canopy, according to Miami Beach environment and sustainability director Betsy Wheaton.