RMU Brings Home the Gold
Developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) in 2000, the LEED rating system is the standard for measuring building sustainability. It verifies whether or not a structure was designed and built using sustainable materials and processes that benefit both human health and the environment.
“This is a wonderful achievement for Robert Morris,” says President Gregory G. Dell’Omo. “Receiving this sought-after recognition signifies that we are committed to sustainability, which is something that’s very important to our entire university community.”
LEED offers four certification levels for new construction: Certified, Silver, Gold, and Platinum. Each level corresponds to a certain number of credits earned across the five basic categories: sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, and indoor environmental quality.
The School of Business achieved LEED Gold status after garnering some additional points in an additional category called Innovation and Design. The building exceeded LEED requirements for the amount of natural light it lets in, for recycled content, and for certified wood (i.e., wood that is raised through sustainable methods). What tipped the scales from the Silver to Gold rating was RMU’s decision this summer to purchase some green power for a minimum of two years.
In addition, the construction itself had a small impact on the environment since the Rudolph Gardens were preserved and that there was no need to add additional parking space to the site.
“We are quite proud to receive this recognition from the USGBC,” says Patrick Litzinger, Ph.D., department head of economics and interim dean of the school. “The School of Business building is a valuable resource to our students and provides state-of-the-art learning facilities that will help them hit the ground running in their careers. The LEED Gold Certification is the icing on the cake, and it shows that this building is good for the local environment as well.”
For more information about LEED certification, visit the U.S. Green Building Council’s website at usgbc.org.
Written by Valentine J. Brkich