Life Science Laboratories at UMass Amherst achieved LEED Gold® certification

The new Life Science Laboratories (LSL) at the University of Massachusetts Amherst achieved LEED Gold® certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC).

The LSL is a research facility dedicated to cross and transdisciplinary research. The laboratories are planned with a flexible ‘ballroom’ concept to enable a variety of future research. Vertical duct shafts are pushed to the ends, leaving an open central area free for a wide range of lab planning modules. This investment in flexible space provides the University with opportunities to recruit new faculty and form partnerships with industry leaders.

The west facade features a cantilevered glazed canopy, which provides weather protection, and runs along the entire length of the building ending at a terrace with picturesque views. At the base of the building, rain gardens/bio-swales capture, filter, and contain runoff from the roof, parking lot, and pavement.

University of Massachusetts Amherst UMass Life Science Laboratories

The design incorporates multiple energy reduction strategies, including high-efficiency (low-flow) fume hoods, enthalpy wheel and heat-pipe energy recovery AHU’s, heat exchangers to harvest energy from water cooled equipment, and a continuous air monitoring system. These systems reduced site energy 36.7% versus code-minimum, for an energy use intensity of just 160kBTU/sf/yr. In AIA 2030 terms, this is a 50% reduction from the Labs21 regional average of 320kBTU/sf/yr.

University of Massachusetts Amherst UMass Life Science Laboratories

Innovation in Design credits were awarded for fully commissioned, ASHRAE 110 compliant, low flow fume hoods throughout the labs, exemplary water use reduction (49% reduction, exceeding the Energy Policy Act of 1992 fixture performance requirements) and for a Green Building Education case study and comprehensive signage that were deemed actively instructional.

The construction team at Whiting Turner was able to divert 81% of construction waste from landfill, greatly exceeding the LEED 75% waste removal requirement and 22% of construction materials were extracted, processed, and manufactured regionally.

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