The new North Wing of Evanston’s Chiaravalle Montessori  school this week was celebrated as the first Illinois private school addition to achieve the environmentally significant certification of LEED Platinum.

The designation by the U.S. Green Building Council was commemorated with a plaque ceremony attended by more than 50 architects, builders, and educators on the school grounds at Hinman Avenue and Dempster Street.

Sustainable features of the addition, which opened last fall, include natural daylighting throughout the building, photovoltaic panels, a green roof that efficiently manages stormwater, and a geothermal system funded by the Illinois Clean Energy Community Foundation.

Chiaravalle’s new gymnasium is twice the size of the one it replaces

To obtain LEED certification, a project must implement practical and measurable strategies and solutions aimed at achieving high performance in sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection, and indoor environmental quality.

The local private school, founded in 1965, is headed by Robyn McCloud-Springer, who said “we strive to be a model green school that prioritizes wellness and cultivates an environmentally informed community who will cherish and protect our planet’s natural resources.”


The new wing is attached to an historically significant building designed by prominent Evanston architect Daniel Burnham.

The new wing was the product of CannonDesign and Bulley & Andrews Construction.

Chiaravalle educates more than 300 students from Evanston, Chicago, and surrounding suburbs and is a non-denominational, Montessori, independent, co-education school for children ages 16 months to 14 years.

Earlier story:

Dramatic addition to Chiaravalle Montessori

A resident of Evanston since 1975, Chuck Bartling holds a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University and has extensive experience as a reporter and editor for daily newspapers, radio...

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