Robert Benson Photography
The following is based on a press release from Framingham State University:
The United States Green Building Council has officially certified North Hall as a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold environmentally-sustainable building, the second-highest rating available.
The 410-bed residence hall, which opened last fall, is located at the north end of State Street and features ultrahigh-efficiency boilers, a geothermal heat pump system that helps heat the building in the winter and cool it in the summer, and a 20,000-gallon underground cistern that captures and diverts rainwater to irrigate the surrounding landscapes.
Other green aspects of the building include high-efficiency toilets, a bottle filter station for students to fill their reusable bottles, and rooftop ventilators that recover energy by taking heat out of the exhaust air to reheat the air coming in during the winter.
One hundred percent of the electricity consumed by the building is purchased from renewable sources.
“When we sought input from our students, faculty and staff on the design of North Hall, one thing everyone agreed upon is that it should be environmentally friendly,” Framingham State President Timothy J. Flanagan said. “With its designation as a Gold Certified LEED building, the entire FSU community can feel proud to have a facility that adheres to the highest standards for environmental sustainability.”
North Hall’s design team included Pfeufer Richardson Architects, Einhorn Yafee Prescott, and Richard Burck Associates Landscape Architects. Consigli Construction Co., Inc. was the construction manager.
"LEED Gold Certification acknowledges that the new residence hall meets some of the most stringent regulations for sustainable construction and healthy living environments,” said Preston Richardson, of Pfeufer Richardson Architects. “This award is a proud milestone for the Framingham State University campus, the Massachusetts State College Building Authority and for the design team."
Construction of North Hall is one of several efforts undertaken in recent years that have resulted in Framingham State becoming a greener campus.
This summer, the university is in the process of converting its power plant from oil to natural gas – a move that’s expected to reduce the university’s carbon footprint by 30 percent.
The university has also installed photovoltaic cells on the McCarthy Campus Center and Athletic Building, and successfully raised the percentage of its energy generated from renewable sources from 1 percent to 17 percent.
These efforts and others have led the Princeton Review to designate Framingham State as a "Green College" each of the past two years, Framingham State representatives said.
Jaclyn Reiss can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org