Philadelphia, PA,
18:00 PM

YouthBuild Philadelphia’s First LEED Platinum-certified Housing Rehabilitation Project Gets Sustainable Boost from CertainTeed Building Products and Construction Expertise


(Valley Forge, Pa.) – A comprehensive package of sustainable building products and building science expertise from CertainTeed helped achieve a whole-home approach to sustainability in what is set to be YouthBuild Philadelphia’s first LEED® Platinum-certified housing rehabilitation. The recent rehabilitation of 4620 Greene Street benefited from CertainTeed insulation, gypsum, roofing, siding, fence and railing products — all of which contributed to the lofty certification.

“We’re proud to partner with YouthBuild in its mission to develop the next generation of green building professionals by pairing them with CertainTeed’s building science experts and providing them with some of the industry’s most cutting-edge building products,” said Eric Nilsson, vice president of corporate marketing for CertainTeed. “By seeing how each system, from insulation and gypsum drywall to roofing to siding, worked together and contributed to the overall sustainability and comfort of the Greene Street home, these students walked away with valuable knowledge and experience that will help them pursue careers in the green building industry.”

The Philadelphia rehab project is the first to be completed under a three-year national partnership between YouthBuild USA and CertainTeed’s parent company, Saint-Gobain, the world’s largest building materials company. As part of YouthBuild USA’s “Green Initiative”, YouthBuild students are provided the opportunity to transform their lives through building green, energy-efficient, and healthy homes, by learning sustainable building skills, earning industry-recognized credentials, and developing environmentally focused leadership skills.

In addition, Sustainable Solutions Corporation (SSC) of Royersford, Pa. facilitated the LEED certification process, integrated green building practices into the renovation project, and provided green building training to YouthBuild students — services in which a large portion were donated.

“Our mission is to forge partnerships and offer strategic, technical counsel that ultimately reduces the environmental impact of homes and buildings,” said Tad Radzinski, president of Sustainable Solutions Corporation. “The Philadelphia YouthBuild project is a key component of our community outreach program and we are thrilled with the results.”

The multifamily home will be sold to a low- or moderate-income family that has fulfilled eligibility requirements of the Philadelphia Neighborhood Housing Services and Philadelphia Housing Authority, and that family will have the option of renting the second portion of the house.

To ensure a high level of occupant comfort and lower monthly energy bills, West Chester Insulation installed CertainTeed’s Hybrid Insulation System in the home’s exterior walls and ceilings. The wall system consists of CertaSpray® Closed-Cell Spray Foam Insulation and OPTIMA® Blow-In Insulation, while CertaSpray and InsulSafe® SP were used to insulate the home’s ceilings. This hybrid approach delivers an air barrier and superior R-value at a significant cost savings compared to a foam-only approach.

Also contributing to significant energy savings for the future owners, Flintlastic® GTA CoolStar™ Low Slope Roofing Cap Sheet, FlintBoard™ ISO Roofing Insulation and Glasbase™ Base Sheet were used to construct a reflective roof surface that can reduce roof temperature by as much as 90 degrees. Landmark Solaris™ Solar Reflective Shingles were also used on a portion of the home’s roof. As a result, the home’s occupants will have better control over their energy consumption, particularly during summer months.

To ensure optimal indoor air quality, CertainTeed’s M2Tech® Gypsum Board was used in the construction of the home’s walls and ceilings. The product’s M2Tech technology combines moisture and mold resistance and is specially engineered to provide enhanced protection against mold growth on the surface and in the core. The wallboard also offers Type X fire resistance that contributes to the safety and longevity of the home.

GlasRoc® Exterior Sheathing and CertaWrap™ Weather Resistant Barrier were used to protect the exterior of the home, which was clad with WeatherBoards™ fiber cement siding, a beautiful siding option that also contributes to the home’s sustainability. Offering the look and feel of real wood, WeatherBoards is also the only fiber cement siding with a third-party validated life cycle assessment and is NAHB Green Approved and third-party certified for recycled content by GreenCircle™ Certified, LLC.

Rounding out the home’s design, CertainTeed Selects ™ Brookhaven Vinyl Fence provided a private backyard living space, and EverNew® Edgewood™ Vinyl Railing added a welcoming touch to the home’s front steps. Both products provide the look of real wood with the durability of vinyl, and contribute to beautiful outdoor living spaces that complement the home.

In addition to products, CertainTeed and Saint-Gobain employees donated nearly 500 hours working with the project team to ensure the home was completed on schedule and achieved its LEED goals. CertainTeed’s industry-leading building scientists also played an especially valuable role in advising the students and other project partners on the use of energy-efficient product technologies and passive strategies for building a sustainable, affordable home.

About CertainTeed
Through the responsible development of innovative and sustainable building products, CertainTeed, headquartered in Valley Forge, Pa., has helped shape the building products industry for more than 100 years. Founded in 1904 as General Roofing Manufacturing Company, the firm's slogan "Quality Made Certain, Satisfaction Guaranteed," quickly inspired the name CertainTeed. Today, CertainTeed® is North America’s leading brand of exterior and interior building products, including roofing, siding, fence, decking, railing, trim, foundations, pipe, insulation, gypsum, ceilings and access covers.

A subsidiary of Saint-Gobain, the world’s largest building products company, CertainTeed and its affiliates have more than 6,000 employees and more than 65 manufacturing facilities throughout the United States and Canada. Recognized as a 2009 and 2010 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, CertainTeed earned the 2011 and 2012 ENERGY STAR Sustained Excellence Award, the highest level of recognition for outstanding contributions to protecting the environment through energy efficiency. The group had total sales of approximately $3.2 billion in 2011.

About YouthBuild Philadelphia Charter School
YouthBuild Philadelphia Charter School provides out-of-school youth in Philadelphia with the broadest range of tools, supports and opportunities available to become self-sufficient, responsible and productive citizens. YouthBuild Philadelphia is an innovative alternative education program that blends a rigorous academic curriculum with on-the-job training through community service. Students at YouthBuild Philadelphia earn their high school diplomas and make successful transitions to full-time jobs and post-secondary educational programs. For more information, visit