The Student Services Building (SSB) has become the first campus facility to garner LEED Platinum certification, enhancing Cal Poly Pomona’s legacy in sustainability and green-building practices.
The award to the new hub of campus administration and student services adds to the university’s already impressive roster of buildings certified by Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) as LEED Gold or LEED Silver.
The SSB scored an 83 out of a possible 110 in the certification process. A building must earn at least 80 points to be certified as LEED Platinum. LEED is a green-building rating program that operates under the umbrella of the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC), a nonprofit coalition of building industry leaders.
The SSB registered the highest marks in the LEED categories of:
- Innovation in Design (6 out of a possible 6 points), including a green cleaning policy and program.
- Sustainable Sites (23 out of 26 points), which includes construction activity pollution prevention, stormwater control and light-pollution reduction measures.
- Water Efficiency (8 out of 10 points), highlighting water-efficient landscaping and water-use reduction mechanisms.
- Energy and Atmosphere (29 out of 35 points), which included the optimizing of energy performance and on-site renewable energy.
“It’s very difficult to get to 80 points. We’re very proud of the 83 points we earned,” said Bruyn Bevans, who was the project manager on the construction of the SSB. “We didn’t make compromises and did everything the right way.”
Some of the sustainability features in the three-story, 138,000-square-foot facility include water-use reduction mechanisms, use of regional building contents, renewable-energy measures and energy-efficient devices.
“The SSB is not just the architectural centerpiece of the campus, it is also a visual reminder that sustainability is one of the core values of the university,” said Monika Kamboures, the university’s sustainability coordinator. “Students can see Cal Poly Pomona’s commitment to sustainability every time they step into the building.”
The road to LEED Platinum certification was a long one that started at the inception of the design phase and continued through the construction process. Every aspect of the project had to be documented and verified by the consulting firm Atelier Ten, which was hired by the university to oversee the process. By the time documentation was completed, several thousand pages had been compiled for LEED Platinum evaluation.
The SSB added another award to its resume when the American Institute of Architects (AIA) Los Angeles chapter awarded the facility its top honor for educational design at a ceremony on Oct. 28. The chapter’s Committee on the Environment also honored the SSB.
Even before the AIA award, the SBB garnered several accolades. The facility earned a 2019 Best Projects Award of Merit in the Higher Education/Research category from Engineering News-Record. The SSB also was featured in the Oct. 7 issue of ENR California magazine, a leading construction industry publication. In June, the SSB took top honors in the education category at the Los Angeles Business Council’s 2019 Architectural Awards ceremony.
CO Architects designed the SSB and used the nearby San Gabriel Mountains and foothills as inspiration for the distinctive undulating aluminum roof. C.W. Driver was the construction contractor.
The other LEED certified buildings on campus are:
- The Collins College of Hospitality Management expansion holds LEED Gold certification.
- The Bronco Recreation and Intramural Complex (BRIC) has LEED Gold certification for the high level of environmental sustainability used in its construction.
- Parking Structure 2 is the first parking facility in California to earn a certificate from Parksmart for sustainability and methods that promote green building practices. Parksmart is a component of the LEED rating system.
- The three-building College of Business of Administration complex has an LEED Silver certification.
- Phase 2 of the 150-unit Residential Suites has an LEED Silver certificate.
- At Innovation Village, Southern California Edison Phase 4 garnered LEED Gold certification.
- I-Poly High School holds LEED Silver certification.
The Department of Facilities Design & Construction oversees the construction of campus building projects.
For its efforts in sustainability, Cal Poly Pomona was listed in 2019 edition of The Princeton Review Guide to 375 Green Colleges.