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8/3/2010 10:52:00 AM
UP building gets highest possible green rating
University of Portland photo
Natural light fills Shiley Hall at the University of Portland.
University of Portland photo
Natural light fills Shiley Hall at the University of Portland.

As far as buildings go, it doesn't get any greener. The University of Portland’s Donald Shiley Hall has been awarded platinum certification by the United States Green Building Council. That means the renovated North Portland building is one of the most energy efficient and environmentally sustainable buildings in the world.

Shiley Hall is one of 15 buildings in Portland, one of 25 buildings on college campuses nationwide, and one of 313 buildings worldwide to earn the council's platinum certification.

“We are continually moving toward more sustainable practices on campus, and Shiley Hall is a sustainable and educational teaching tool,” says James Male, the engineering professor who helped oversee the expansion and remodel of the building.

Male hopes students are inspired by the hall and follow its lead in their careers.

Shiley Hall, which cost $21 million to expand and renovate, sports an eco-roof above the computer lab, a bio-swale outside the student center, wind cowls on the roof that collect fresh air, windows with electronic tinting and countertops made of recycled compressed paper.

The city of Portland has already given an award to the 80,000-square-foot hall, which includes water efficient landscaping, reducing irrigation needs by 63 percent. Efficient plumbing fixtures helping to cut water consumption in the building by 47 percent.

Photo cells sense natural light and reduce power or turn off light fixtures. Occupancy sensors turn off lights automatically when areas are not occupied. Windows, open and close for natural ventilation and cooling.

Irrigation groundwater is used to cool the hydronic floor in the gallery space, saving about 8.5 percent of the total cooling energy needed.

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