Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

STRATEGY: GREEN BUILDING; UNF Adopting New Standard for Building on Campus

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

STRATEGY: GREEN BUILDING; UNF Adopting New Standard for Building on Campus

Article excerpt

Byline: ALISON TRINIDAD

The University of North Florida is turning green.

To green building, that is.

The concept is a holistic approach to design and construction that considers the efficiency of design and types of materials used in construction, where they come from and how they affect their users and the environment.

The university has unofficially adopted a voluntary, national standard for green building, said Zak Ovadia, the university's facilities and planning director.

Ovadia, who started his job last October, is spearheading the effort. He said all the university's future buildings will strive to meet the standard. And, eventually, the campus will be more pedestrian friendly, moving parking to the periphery and employing some type of mass transit system.

The first of the green projects is the university's Social Science building, which is under construction.

The three-story building, near the center of campus and adjacent to the arts and sciences building, will measure 63,000 square feet. Expected to open in the fall of 2006, it will house auditoriums, classrooms, academic labs and offices.

The building is seeking special certification from the U.S. Green Building Council, a private, non-profit group that encourages environmentally responsible buildings. The council's primary tool to accomplish that is the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Green Building Rating System, which measures a building's impact on its surroundings.

The rating system, launched in 2000, evaluates site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.

The UNF building is the only project in Jacksonville to register for LEED Certification, according to the council's online database. …

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