LUBBOCK, Texas, Jan. 19, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Texas Tech University Rawls College of Business students return this week to a "greener" side of the fence as they enter a new building -- focused not on the landscaping, but on the environmentally acclaimed architecture of the new facility.
The nearly 150-thousand-square-foot facility, designed by Boston-based architectural firm Goody Clancy, was built for LEED-certification by the U.S. Green Building Council. LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification requires buildings to achieve high performance in key areas of human and environmental health, including sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.
"It was important to us that we build this new facility with all facets of a 'green environment' in mind," said Debbie Laverie, Ph.D., Rawls College of Business senior associate dean. "We've been a leader in our nation in a number of areas as a College, and we need to continue that momentum even in the very bricks and mortar of this new building for the next generation of leaders we turn out. Garnering official certification from LEED (expected by June) will be yet another honor for us."
In addition to four detention ponds to capture storm water for reuse on site, the new College's structure is built with nearly 75 percent recycled materials -- much of it derived from the demolition of two former on-campus residence halls. Inside the inviting facility, even the colorful broken-glass detail throughout the interior of the building's walls is recycled.
Utilizing West Texas' many days of sun, natural light is plentiful in the building. And, according to Rawls professor of accounting Don Clancy, this is good for both the environment and students' moods. Clancy has been a part of the University's overall building planning for more than 11 years.
On the flip side, exterior glass used throughout the building blocks 40 percent of the sun, he explained, and some of the windows block 60 percent. This stops the heat or cold from getting inside the building, therefore requiring less electricity for heating or cooling.
As for the high-tech infrastructure, a movie-theater-style auditorium features a 10-by-16-foot screen used for teaching, boasting a resolution higher than high definition. In tiered classrooms, each seat is wired for power and Internet, while flat classrooms have wireless Internet. Additionally, five print kiosks located throughout the building allow students and faculty to swipe ID cards and print directly to printers.
"We're also excited about the computer screens located outside each classroom door, where class schedules or emergency notifications can be posted at a moment's notice," Laverie said. "It's going to be an exciting semester -- and this is just the start of a new generation for Rawls."
CONTACT: Kim Davis, Nomiss Communication
SOURCE Texas Tech University Rawls College of Business