To meet an unprecedented demand for on-campus housing, the Louisiana State University Department of Residential Life (LSU Res Life) plans to open a brand new, LEED-certified (Leader in Energy and Environmental Design) residence hall for fall 2015.
The 330-bed building is the latest step in keeping with the LSU Comprehensive Master Housing Plan, which in its eleven years has seen more than 57 percent of on-campus housing inventory replaced, renovated, or newly constructed.
Provisionally named Cypress Hall, the new residence hall is scheduled to break ground in late summer 2013 and will sit on the northeast side of campus adjacent to the historic LSU Enchanted Forest and Greek Amphitheater. Students can enjoy the surrounding green space as well as several green features in hall. The building will feature storm water recovery and solar demonstration systems, several outdoor learning spaces and courtyards, two large indoor classrooms, electric car charging stations, interior bike storage rooms, and various sustainable finishes, as well as energy-efficient mechanical systems, doors and windows.
“We’ve demonstrated our commitment to sustainable practices in facilities work for many years now in finishes, equipment, and in-hall education. This latest project is a large scale demonstration of our commitment to sustainable operations, and we believe the students see value in that,” said Karen Rockett, Director of Facilities for LSU Res Life.
In addition to facilitating the LEED-certified innovations of Cypress Hall, designers will continue to honor the historic aesthetic of the LSU campus and famed American architect A. Hayes Town with red tile roofs, seamless indoor-outdoor spaces, and fountains to balance living and learning.
“We strive to be innovative leaders both locally on our campus and nationally in the housing industry as we look for ways to exceed students’ needs and wants while reducing operating costs. Building the first LEED-certified building on the Baton Rouge campus positions us for the future,” said Steve Waller, Executive Director of LSU Res Life.
And the future for LSU Res Life looks bright. Currently housing an average of 67 percent of the freshman class, the Comprehensive Master Housing Plan will grow campus inventory over the next several years to ultimately house 85 percent of the freshman class, without imposing a residency requirement.
The U.S. Green Building Council defines LEED certification as a “recognized green building certification system that provides third-party verification that a building or community was designed and built using strategies aimed at improving performance across all the metrics that matter most: energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality, and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts. Developed by the U.S. Green Building Council, LEED provides a concise framework for identifying and implementing practical and measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions” (www.usgbc.org/leed).
The LSU Department of Residential Life is committed to the academic success and personal growth of the campus community. Res Life works to create comfortable environments in world-class facilities for more than 5,500 residents where learning and development can continue outside of the classroom.