Existing Buildings v2009
Thurgood Marshall Elementary School
Philadelphia, PA 19120
LEED Certified 2011
Thurgood Marshall Elementary School achieved the ENERGY STAR label with a superior rating of 81, which equates to 28% energy savings when compared to typical school buildings nationwide.
Thurgood Marshall Elementary School is a shining example of transforming an existing, urban building into a healthy, green school for students, teachers, and staff. Located in the Olney neighborhood in North Philadelphia, Thurgood Marshall was built in 1997. The four-story, 114,000-square-foot school serves more than 700 students in grades pre-K through 8 with more than 100 teachers and staff members. The school is known for its tight-knit community and energetic staff, and the building shares space with numerous community organizations.
In 2008, USGBC accepted the School District of Philadelphia as a participant of its LEED in Existing Schools Pilot Program, and the district selected Thurgood Marshall to pursue certification under the LEED 2009 for Existing Buildings: O&M rating system. Of the 12 school districts that participated in the pilot program, the School District of Philadelphia was the first to successfully achieve LEED for Existing Buildings certification.
The project team involved numerous district departments and a school-based team that included the principal, assistant principal, building engineer, and several teachers. The project’s total performance period spanned two years. While many LEED strategies were specific to operations and maintenance activities, the students were involved in the certification process. Each classroom assigns one student to be the Green Monitor, an environmental student ambassador who leads other students in saving energy and recycling. Thurgood Marshall is the first K-12 school in Pennsylvania certified under the LEED for Existing Buildings: O&M rating system, and the fifth in the United States.