The 148,000-sq-ft Energy Innovation Laboratory houses Idaho National Laboratory's research and development programs. The three-story EIL provides reconfigurable, open-floor lab space and state-of-the-art equipment to encourage collaboration among INL researchers, students and partners who are working to modernize America's nuclear-energy systems. It also provides a venue for visiting scientists to work with INL researchers and engineers on innovative solutions to challenges in advanced clean energy.

The EIL project team initially sought to achieve LEED Gold, but close collaboration with the owners helped the facility earn a LEED Platinum certification. The contractor recycled or repurposed 97% of construction waste, including 36 tons of steel, 36 tons of wood, 21 tons of cardboard, 90 tons of gypsum and 5 tons of miscellaneous materials. Diverted materials went to private and public recycling centers.

Construction crews also practiced exceptional indoor-air-quality management during construction. "The LEED goals were agreed upon by all parties," says John Baker, Battelle Energy Alliance's division director of planning, estimating and scheduling. "The team collaborated closely on LEED characteristics during the design phase, and there was constant communication with craftsmen until construction was complete." Of the 471 laboratories worldwide registered in the LEED program, this is one of only 22 certified as Platinum, according to the U.S. Green Building Council. One of the Best of the Best judges said, "It's very unusual for a lab to get LEED, and they hit every LEED point, an incredibly difficult thing to do."

Submitted by Battelle Energy Alliance

Owner-Developer REL Facilities LLC

Tenant Idaho National Laboratory; Battelle Energy Alliance

Architects Plan One/Architects; RBB Architects Inc.; Weaver & Associates

Design-Builder Ormond Builders Inc.

Engineers Keller Associates; Engineering System Solutions

LEED Coordinator Kath Williams + Associates