The Difference Between WELL + LEED

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WELL and LEED | What is the difference?

Click here to go straight to LEED and WELL comparison chart , click the FAQs button immediately below for answers and articles from the experts or read up on some high-level background information by scrolling down this page.


Over the last decade, the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design® (LEED®) green building program and WELL Building Standard™ (WELL™) have gained national recognition for responsible building and design. Understanding the differences between these certifications helps owners prioritize opportunities for defining their project in alignment with organizational values while attracting top talent.

Greg Sabel portrait headshot, Senior Vice President for C.D. Smith Construction


“C.D. Smith is committed to enhancing the communities in which we live, work and play.


We can help you understand the financial and business impacts of a sustainable approach to building.”


Greg Sabel, Senior Vice President for C.D. Smith

LEED and WELL projects incorporate healthy, sustainable practices into construction and ongoing building operations. Both programs positively impact the people who occupy the spaces for the life of the building. Although there are similar requirements, the two certifications are very different.

C.D. Smith Construction Corporate Office stairway and kitchen area with LEED Gold certification

LEED is a certification program developed by the U.S. Green Building Council® (USGBC®). It is the most widely used green building rating system in the world for assessing a building's environmental impact.

WELL is governed by the International WELL Building Institute pbc™ (IWBI™). WELL Certification focuses on a building’s impact to human health and well-being. WELL standards set air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort and mental health requirements to optimize occupants’ wellness.

Facade of SECURA Insurance Home Office in Neenah, WI with WELL Certified GoldTM indication


The City of Madison's Nakoosa Trail Fleet Building was certified LEED Gold® in 2021. Featuring ample natural light, rooftop solar units, a sun wall incoming air tempering system and onsite electric vehicle charging stations, it is the first certified automotive fleet shop in the U.S.A.

SECURA Insurance's New Home Office earned its WELL Certified™ Gold status in July 2021. Natural lighting, flexible workspaces and onsite fitness facilities are a just a few of the building elements that contributed to this achievement.

C.D. Smith’s Corporate Office represents the next-generation standard for high-performance building design, construction and operations. The building opened in May of 2019, and in March 2020 the office was awarded LEED Gold® certification by the U.S. Green Building Council.

SSM Health Beaver Dam Clinic New Construction Building Exterior Entrance WELL + LEED text

SSM Health's Beaver Dam Clinic prioritizes patient wellness by offering a healthy and sustainable environment for patients and employees. The building is expected to earn WELL Building StandardTM version 2 certification and is qualified for LEED® certification.


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LEED-vs-WELL-Comparison Chart by C.D. Smith Construction


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C.D. Smith Construction is an industry leader in safely providing the highest quality commercial construction services. Utilizing an integrated approach and self-performing trade services combined with technical expertise, our team serves as a solutions provider throughout all phases of a project, from planning through construction. With veteran leadership and a dedication to our employees and clients, we proudly place our name on projects of all sizes across the United States.



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Fond du Lac, WI 54935

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8325 W. Tower Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53223

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Suite 900 
Madison, WI 53703

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333 Front Street North
Suite 701 
La Crosse, WI 54601

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