Susquehanna Science Building Earns LEED Certification
Published on July 21, 2011
SELINSGROVE—Susquehanna University’s new science building has earned silver-level LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. The three-story, 81,000-square-foot facility, which was open for classes in March 2010, is one of the most visible manifestations of the university’s ongoing commitment to sustainable operations and practices.
LEED promotes sustainable building and development practices through rating systems that recognize strategies for better environmental and health performance. Among the criteria LEED measures are sustainable site selection, water efficiency, energy use, materials and waste, indoor air quality and more. Susquehanna submitted documentation to meet 37 criteria—four more than necessary for silver certification—and received credit for all.
The building supports the biology, chemistry, and earth and environmental sciences departments with teaching and faculty research labs, classrooms, lecture halls, seminar rooms, computer labs, a rooftop greenhouse and lab support space. Rainwater reclamation from the roof, energy recapture in the heating and cooling system, and water flow reduction throughout the building are just some of the ways the building saves energy and conserves resources. Motion-sensor lighting, landscaping with native plants, and preferred parking for low-emission and fuel-efficient vehicles are additional features that make the building environmentally friendly.
“The process [for achieving LEED certification] was really painstaking,” said Rick Rebuck, assistant director of facilities at Susquehanna, “but getting certified was certainly gratifying.”
The building was designed by STV Architects Inc., Douglassville. R.S. Mowery & Sons Inc., Mechanicsburg, served as construction contractor.
Karen M. Jones