Lafayette College’s newest student living community, the Grossman House for Global Perspectives, has been awarded LEED-CI Gold certification by the U.S. Green Building Council. LEED, or leadership in energy and environmental design, is an internationally recognized standard that promotes sustainability in building design, construction, and operation.
Built in 1915 as a fraternity house, Grossman is the College’s first LEED certified building.
“It’s been said that ‘the greenest building is one you don’t have to build,’” says Mary Wilford-Hunt, director of facilities planning and construction. “By adaptively reusing an existing building, we were able to bring this striking old gem in the heart of the Lafayette campus back to life in a sustainable way.”
The renovated Grossman House has many energy and water saving features including windows that reflect heat, thereby reducing the energy needed to heat and cool the building, and a storm water retention tank that uses captured rainwater to flush toilets.
In addition, most of the building materials were purchased from sustainable and green manufacturers, and during demolition all steel, aluminum, wood, and concrete were recycled. New furniture was made from recycled material and there’s an indoor bicycle storage facility.
A dashboard in the building’s lobby monitors energy use allowing residents and visitors to see how much energy is consumed. This screen provides “real time” readouts of actual energy use for water, electricity, steam and gas, allowing residents to better understand how their actions impact the depletion of natural resources and motivating them to conserve energy.
Since its renovation, Grossman House has served the campus not only as a force of global awareness but also as an educational resource on sustainable design—a significant feat for a building originally constructed almost 100 years ago. It is named in honor of Richard A. Grossman ’64 and his wife, Rissa Welt Grossman.
Colleges across the United States have taken leading roles in the construction of green building in order to reduce resource consumption, save money in the long run, and instill the importance on environmental sustainability on their students.
Read more about Grossman House and its programs
Higher resolution photo available online, http://flic.kr/p/dkzZXS