USF’s Interdisciplinary Sciences building is awarded Gold Certification for sustainability.
Special to USF News
TAMPA, Fla. (Feb. 27, 2012) – The new Interdisciplinary Science Teaching & Research building has attained LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold Certification from the United States Green Building Council, the national organization which has set the standard for sustainable buildings.
All 40 of the attempted credits were attained. ISA is the second new building on the USF Tampa Campus to be awarded the LEED Gold rating – the first being the Patel Center for Global Solutions.
The $80 million building was designed by HOK and constructed by Skanska USA Building Inc. HOK and Skanska are industry leaders in sustainable design and construction. The result of their collaboration on the ISA project is a beautifully designed, functional and environmentally-sound building.
The design of ISA took careful consideration of sustainable building practices that would ensure the highest standards of indoor air quality for the building occupants. Multiple open plan areas provide natural light and views of the outdoors. Use of a variety of low Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) minimizes off-gassing. Energy efficiency was attained through the use of high-performance glazing construction, reduced interior lighting, occupancy sensors, and high efficiency VAV (Variable Air Volume) equipment.
The building was constructed from a variety of sustainable resources in order to reduce its impact on the environment. Examples include stainless steel handrails which are comprised of 80% post-industrial scrap and the acoustical ceiling tiles which contain 69% pre-consumer recycled content.
As with the Patel Center for Global Solutions, the planting design for the project utilized a pallet of native and drought tolerant materials comprised of native grasses, wood shrubs and groundcover. Irrigation from wells is being used only until the landscape becomes established.
Several measures were also employed to encourage building users to utilize alternative transportation, including locating the building within ¼ of a mile to three bus lines, providing 20 secure spaces for bicycle storage, and one shower/changing room.
Achieving LEED Gold certification for the building is another example of USF’s continued commitment to creating an environmentally-conscious campus. As part of this commitment, the new Tampa Campus Master Plan calls for all new construction to be LEED certified. USF is providing sustainability leadership that will move the campus and community into the global spotlight.