People Of WFIT
Wed April 11, 2012
LEED WFIT Studios: A Co-op In Sustainability
WFIT’s new state of the art studios will be submitted for LEED certification shortly after construction wraps up. The building could earn a silver rating, which is traditionally considered a near-impossible feat for similarly budgeted projects.
LEED is a tiered building certification system developed by the US Green Building Council. It stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, and constitutes an internationally recognized rating system for sustainable building practices. This rating system has been consciously integrated into WFIT Studios’ structural design, choice of building materials, and method of construction. Both LEED design considerations and the certification process make a statement of social responsibility, and deliver numerous economic and environmental benefits to the building owners and occupants.
WFIT’s effort in sustainability involves many hands and is part of Florida Tech’s drive to improve the campus. It takes highly skilled individuals such as Greg Tsark, Florida Tech’s Vice President for Facilities Operations to manage the complexity and technical challenges of LEED certification. Florida Tech students also have much to contribute, providing a surprising amount of initiative, creative ideas to improve building performance, and just enough free labor to tip the financial scales.
Elizabeth Rose, an Environmental Science senior, initiated the student project early in 2011. She verified the viability of New Construction LEED certification and drove further LEED design considerations. Rose passed this multi-year project onto Gregg Legters, an Interdisciplinary Science senior, and Colin Barbalace, a Construction Management junior. Both Barbalace and Legters are working on documenting the sustainable design features of WFIT Studios. They are also integrating their efforts with the Student Organization for Sustainable Action (SOSA) to further improve WFIT Studios’ standing with the LEED rating system. Dr. Kenyon Lindeman, the Professor who heads the sustainability program at FIT, inspires and supports this and many other student projects in campus Sustainability.