Press Release for Thursday, January 3, 2008

UNF LEED Green Building Earns 2007 Award of Excellence

Contact: Joanna Norris, Assistant Director
Department of Media Relations and Events
(904) 620-2102

The Social Sciences Building at the University of North Florida recently received the 2007 Award of Excellence for University Building by the Southeast Construction Association. UNF was recognized for constructing the first LEED building on campus and in Northeast Florida.

“This building has broken new ground on campus and has set the standard for future buildings in relation to the green building movement in Northeast Florida,” said Zak Ovadia, director of UNF’s Facilities Planning and Construction. “The success of this project and the example it sets are due primarily to the support of the administration in emphasizing the University’s role as stewards of the environment and in setting an example for the students to embrace the sustainability movement.”

Earlier this year, the University’s $11 million Social Sciences Building was awarded LEED Certification by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design is the USGBC’s leading-edge system for designing and constructing the world’s greenest, energy efficient, high performing buildings. Waterless urinals, low-flow fixtures and low-energy lighting decreased utility consumption and earned LEED points.

The 70,589-square-foot facility opened in the fall of 2006, becoming the first LEED-certified facility in Jacksonville and the first green building on campus. The three-story Social Sciences Building was designed by Smith McCrary Architects to achieve LEED Certification for energy use, lighting, water and material use as well as incorporating a variety of other sustainable strategies. Elkins Constructors oversaw the construction, and the project team diverted more than 800 tons of concrete, asphalt and steel to recycling centers, saving $23,000 in disposal fees.

The Social Sciences Building at UNF houses the College of Arts and Sciences’ departments of sociology, anthropology, psychology, criminal justice, and political science and public administration, as well as classrooms, labs, conference rooms and offices.

The LEED™ Green Building Rating System is a voluntary third party rating system where credits are earned for satisfying specified green building criteria. Projects are evaluated within six environmental categories: sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, and indoor environmental quality.

The U.S. Green Building Council is the nation’s leading coalition of corporations, builders, universities, federal and local agencies, and nonprofit organizations working together to promote buildings that are environmentally responsible, profitable and healthy places to live and work.