Carnegie Mellon Press Release: November 11, 2003
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Chriss Swaney or Teresa Thomas

For immediate release:
November 11, 2003

Carnegie Mellon Has Nation's First Green Dorm; Receives Silver LEED Certification

PITTSBURGH—Carnegie Mellon University's $12.5 million New House residence hall has earned recognition by the U.S. Green Building Council as the first green dormitory, making it one of the nationšs healthiest and most energy-efficient residence halls.

The university received a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver Certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), a coalition of building industry leaders working to promote environmentally safe places to live and work.

The Carnegie Mellon residence hall will be part of a tour this week for the 2003 U.S. Green Building Councilšs International Conference and Expo meeting in Pittsburgh.

Carnegie Mellon's 71,400-square-foot "green building" offers its 255 undergraduate residents a variety of environmentally friendly amenities ranging from a sophisticated air ventilation system to specially designed, high-efficiency washing machines to conserve water use. Even the carpeting was specifically made for Carnegie Mellon from recycled yarn, said Tim Michael, director of housing services. The New House residence hall, completed this spring, also sports lighting activated by motion sensors to reduce energy consumption and 18-inch exterior walls for improved insulation.

"Carnegie Mellon's adoption of sustainable or 'green' building principles demonstrates its commitment to the health and well-being of young people today and in the future. This is really about the next generation," said Rebecca Flora, executive director of Pittsburgh's Green Building Alliance and board member of the U.S. Green Building Council, during presentation of the Silver LEED certificate.

LEED provides a national standard for what constitutes a green building. The LEED system is a voluntary, consensus-based national standard for developing high-performance sustainable buildings. LEED provides a complete framework for assessing building performance and meeting sustainability goals. Evaluation categories include sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, indoor environmental quality, and innovation and design.

Pittsburgh has the first green convention center in the David Lawrence Convention Center and now the first green dormitory in Carnegie Mellon's New House. At Carnegie Mellon, another dormitory is being renovated with green principles and a new technology building called the Collaborative Innovation Center is being constructed with LEED certification in mind.

"We love having 'firsts' here in Pittsburgh. This leadership in green building is really just one more chapter in Pittsburgh's environmental and economic transformation. Carnegie Mellon's leadership in green building is also another natural next step for them. For a university that is a leader in innovation and technology, it makes total sense that they would embrace and adopt these types of principles. I believe we educate by doing the right thing and modeling right behavior. By doing green development, Carnegie Mellon has set a standard that I hope all of its students will follow into their future lives," Flora said.


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