FAYETTE, Iowa (October 29, 2009) – “Green initiatives were top priority when the initial discussions on our $75 million project ensued,” said UIU President Alan G. Walker. “Going green is a smart choice for the obvious reasons—it saves natural resources and reduces the impact to the environment up front, and will provide savings in energy costs to the University well into the future.”
“But most important,” added Walker, “Green construction can protect the health of our students, faculty and staff who use these buildings every day and will improve the overall academic environment for enhanced learning and living.”
Upper Iowa University broke ground in August on three new buildings on its Fayette campus: a new Liberal Arts building, student union, and suite-style student housing. All of the buildings are being constructed with the following green initiatives: high use of regional and recycled content materials; incorporating low-water-usage fixtures and water-efficient landscaping with underground cisterns that collect water to irrigate surrounding landscaping; integrating flexibility features throughout in anticipation of changing systems, wiring, and functionality; improving indoor environment through use of low-emission materials, ability to control lighting and thermal systems, connecting indoor and outdoor spaces to provide more daylight and scenic views; and increasing comfort through operable windows and lighting control.
Additionally, the new Liberal Arts building will offer optimized energy performance through the use of geothermal well field system and “chilled-sail” technology for cooling. A geothermal heat pump is a central heating and/or cooling system that pumps heat to or from the ground, using the earth as a source of heat (in the winter), or as source of cold (in the summer). This design takes advantage of the moderate temperatures in the ground to boost efficiency and reduce the operational costs of heating and cooling systems.
A total of 55 wells are being bored near the building at a depth of 300 feet each. When completed, UIU will seek LEED® (Leadership In Energy and Environmental Design) Silver Certification for the new Liberal Arts building. Finally, a construction waste management process is in place that diverts 75 percent of all construction waste from the landfill.
According to Bryan Jolley, executive director of UIU Facilities Management Services, within the next week “red iron will be swinging into place” as the skeleton for the new Liberal Arts building is erected. “With winter just around the corner, it is important to get the skin of the building on so as not to cause any delays in the current timetable,” he said. “This building is scheduled to be completed by Fall Term 2010.”
Jolley added, “Although I have only been here a short time, it is exciting to be part of a University that is spreading its wings during slow economic times. These new buildings are a beautiful tribute to Upper Iowa’s commitment to its students.”
Meyer Scherer & Rockcastle is the architectural firm responsible for the design, and the building contractor is The Samuels Group.
Complete information about this project can be found at www.uiu.edu/future.
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