Dentistry addition rated LEED Silver for sustainability


A courtyard addition to the Dental Building and W.K. Kellogg Foundation Institute recently earned LEED Silver certification from the U.S. Green Building Council in recognition of sustainability efforts.

LEED, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is the most widely used green building rating system in the world. It recognizes sustainability efforts to create healthy, highly efficient and cost-saving green buildings on one of four levels: Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum.

The courtyard addition is the 23rd U-M building to earn LEED designation. The project repurposed space to provide additional building square footage without disturbing undeveloped land. Sustainable features include:

  • Low-flow bathroom fixtures, which aim to reduce potable water use by more than 22% when compared with a similar building in compliance with the 2015 Michigan Plumbing Code.
  • Nearly 23% energy cost savings when compared with a similar building in compliance with the ASHRAE 90.1-2007 energy code.
  • A ventilation system that meets ASHRAE 55 and ASHRAE 62.1 requirements for optimal occupant comfort.
  • Low-emitting materials, including adhesives, sealants, paints, coatings and flooring systems.
  • Close proximity to public transportation and basic services, including restaurants, shops and places of worship.
  • Native and drought-tolerant plantings, and no permanent irrigation, in an outdoor space for the campus community to gather and connect.

The overarching project involved 176,000 gross square feet in renovation space and 48,000 gross square feet in building addition space — involving an improved patient entrance, modern teaching clinics with flexible furniture and equipment, new research space, and a new special needs/inter-professional care clinic to treat patients with complex medical conditions and disabilities.

All new U-M buildings and additions with an estimated construction budget greater than $10 million are required to achieve at least LEED Silver certification. In 2022, U-M approved maximum greenhouse gas emissions targets that cover 14 building types and all new construction and major renovation projects greater than $10 million.

In addition to pursuing LEED certification on new construction projects, U-M building standards have prioritized occupant comfort, energy conservation and greenhouse gas reduction in support of universitywide carbon neutrality efforts.

Recently, the university announced that the newly unveiled South Fifth Housing project would complement U-M carbon neutrality goals and include substantial geothermal exchange and solar components.


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