Carnegie Mellon buildings win LEED Gold certification

1 December 2011 (Last Updated December 1st, 2011 18:30)

The US Green Building Council (USGBC) has awarded LEED Gold certification to Carnegie Mellon University's Gates Center for Computer Science and Hillman Center for Future-Generation Technologies on its campus in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, US.

The US Green Building Council (USGBC) has awarded LEED Gold certification to Carnegie Mellon University’s Gates Center for Computer Science and Hillman Center for Future-Generation Technologies on its campus in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, US.

Designed by Mack Scogin Merrill Elam Architects, the centres accommodate a total of 217,000ft2 of classrooms, offices and laboratories and include landscaping designed by Michael Van Valkenburgh Associates.

The new buildings serve as a crossroads for the 143-acre campus, with five main entrances on three levels and two major pedestrian bridges.

Almost 98% of on-site construction waste from the buildings was reused or otherwise diverted from landfills and more than 15% of the building materials were manufactured using recycled materials.

Around 30% of these materials were manufactured within 500 miles of Pittsburgh, and sustainable forests provided more than half of the wood used in the buildings.

The buildings incorporate a rainwater and snowmelt collection system to collect water for flushing toilets, and feature low-flow lavatories and low-flush urinals to reduce potable water use by half.

Rotary heat exchangers called enthalpy wheels are used in the buildings’ ventilation systems to limit energy loss, in addition to occupancy sensors that help control lighting and office temperatures throughout the buildings.