BY MIRIAMA LEAR
Plenty of people turned out to celebrate green at Vermilion’s Ritter Public Library. Why? Because Ritter is the first library in Ohio that has won a gold award for Leadership in Energy and Environment Design (LEED) from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).
The USGBC is a nationwide nonprofit organization dedicated to sustainable building design and construction.
The new addition to Ritter Public Library has impressive design, which includes a green vegetative roof, a porous parking lot and rain garden. It also has a cistern and low-flow plumbing fixtures — so it’s really no wonder that this project deserves a celebration.
“We are celebrating this big award for a small town,” said Patty Kishman, program coordinator at Ritter Public Library. “We have a lot of people from town here tonight. The town of Vermilion is really supportive to the library. We have a lot of good friends.”
The event also functioned as a fundraiser for Ritter’s materials budget, which, due to cuts in state funding, has been reduced by thirty percent this year. Money from this fund will be used to purchase books, movies and video games.
Vermilion resident Sarah Stepp feels really relaxed in the new eco building. “The atmosphere is very calming,” she said. “We came out with my sister and friends, and we really like the idea of a green library. It is a good way to start to get people thinking what they can do to have a good environment.”
“I like the new addition building of the library,” said Shane Virgin. “We are proud of it — that such a small town as Vermilion can get such a big award. We are very happy that we can have this award in Vermilion. It’s good motivation for other people, that they can go environment-friendly in their houses and businesses.”
See the full photo gallery here.