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Santa Clara University’s Paul Locatelli Student Center Recognized as Sustainable Building

Paul Locatelli Student Activity Center of Santa Clara University has received the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. The LEED Gold certification acknowledges the effective usage of resources and energy during the building and operation of Paul Locatelli Student Activity Center, spanning16,284-sq ft.

Santa Clara University will commemorate its accomplishment on November 28 at 3:00 p.m. at the Locatelli Student Activity Center and during that time, the university will display its LEED Gold Certification award.

The student center, constructed in 2010, is designed to harmonize with other structures on campus and it combines energy-efficient aspects like overhangs and trellises to lessen direct solar gain on the west and south face of the center. Adhesives, surface coatings and paints in the building were selected depending on their non-emissions or low-emissions of volatile organic compounds. The carpets used in the center have received Green Label certification from the Carpet and Rug Institute. The building is also furnished with conventional university recycling, composting and waste bins to encourage students to redirect their waste from the dump.

Decomposed granite and mortar-free pavers are used for walkways around the center to decrease water runoff. Brick pavers are pervious and let water to pass through storm drains when compared to popular cement sidewalks, which are watertight. Water drainage from the building is redirected to planting areas to minimize the effect of storm water and maximize the infiltration rate.

The building was erected in June 2010 in honor of Paul Locatelli, S.J., the longest serving president who passed away in July 2010. Paul Locatelli Student Activity Center is the greenest building on the university campus. The university introduced several initiatives such as installing solar panels, a smart microgrid, a wind turbine and a solar thermal collector in order to make the campus climate neutral by 2015. Recently, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency honored Santa Clara University with a 2011 Green Power Leadership Award.

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