Connecticut College's largest classroom, Bill Hall's Silfen Auditorium, has been awarded LEED® Silver certification, established by the U.S. Green Building Council and verified by the Green Building Certification Institute. LEED is the nation's pre-eminent program for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings. "Connecticut College is committed to long-term sustainability, and we are proud to have our green building practices recognized," President Leo I. Higdon Jr. said. "Silfen Auditorium is an important learning space in our community, and its renovation has served as a model for other environmentally-sensitive construction projects on campus." Silfen Auditorium, which seats up to 150 people, was renovated in 2008 into a modern and dynamic classroom with all of the necessary tools for interactive teaching and learning.
Named in honor of David and Lyn Gordon Silfen '67, who funded the renovation, Silfen Auditorium is one of the few campus locations that can accommodate a large group and is also used for special events, community presentations and lectures. Silfen Auditorium was one of the first major construction projects completed after the adoption of a college-wide green building policy in 2005. A quarter of the total building materials used for the renovation were manufactured using recycled materials, and nearly half of the building materials were manufactured regionally. More than 95 percent of the total wood used for the project was FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) Certified; 100 percent of the applicable equipment is Energy Star-rated and all of the adhesives, sealants, paints, coatings, carpets, furniture and seating are low-emitting materials that reduce indoor air contaminants. More than 63 percent of the construction waste generated on site was diverted from landfills.
"Our goal with all new construction projects on campus is to improve the learning environment while also working to reduce the College's environmental impact," Vice President for Administration Ulysses Hammond, who oversees campus construction, said. "We want to maintain the College's position as a model for environmental stewardship and as a resource for environmental education." The College has also applied for LEED certification for the new 10,000-square-foot fitness center, which opened in 2009. Construction began this month on the new Science Center, which includes a complete renovation of the College's oldest building and a large addition, with the goal of also achieving LEED certification for the entire project.
About U.S. Green Building Council The Washington, D.C.-based U.S. Green Building Council is committed to a prosperous and sustainable future for our nation though cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings. With a community comprising 80 local affiliates, more than 18,000 member companies and organizations, and more than 155,000 LEED Professional Credential holders, USGBC is the driving force of an industry that is projected to contribute $554 billion to the U.S. gross domestic product from 2009-2013. USGBC leads an unlikely diverse constituency of builders and environmentalists, corporations and nonprofit organizations, elected officials and concerned citizens, and teachers and students.
About LEED The U.S. Green Building Council's LEED green building certification system is the foremost program for the design, construction and operation of green buildings. More than 32,000 projects are currently participating in the commercial and institutional LEED rating systems, comprising more than 9.6 billion square feet of construction space in all 50 states and 114 countries. By using less energy, LEED-certified buildings save money for families, businesses and taxpayers; reduce greenhouse gas emissions; and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the larger community.