The recently completed Purcell Pavilion at the Joyce Center and the how old Innovation Park building were awarded Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold and Silver certification, respectively, by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC), according to a University press release. “[LEED certification provides] third-party verification that a building or community was designed and built using strategies aimed at improving performance across all the metrics that matter most: energy savings, water efficiency, CO2 emissions reduction, improved indoor environmental quality and stewardship of resources and sensitivity to their impacts,” according to the USGBC’s website. “As part of the University’s goal to ensure that its Catholic character informs all its endeavors, we seek to minimize the environmental impact of new campus buildings and the act of constructing them,” said Doug Marsh, Notre Dame’s associate vice president and University architect. In addition to the two newly certified buildings, Stinson-Remick Hall, Geddes Hall and Ryan Hall have LEED Gold certification. The University is also currently pursuing LEED certification for the Compton Family Center Ice Hockey Arena and Carole Sandner Hall, as well as the Stayer Executive Education Center, a building currently in the planning and design stage. “We expect to continue to embrace the LEED certification process and seek it for future new campus buildings,” Marsh said. “Most of our design and construction staff in the Office of the University Architect have earned the distinction of LEED Accredited Professionals and continue to track the ever-evolving LEED credit system.” Marsh said the high percentage use of regionally manufactured and harvested construction materials, rapidly renewable materials and building materials made from recycled content, the diversion of construction waste from landfills and the highly efficient energy systems helped the Purcell Pavilion and Innovation Park building to receive the LEED certification. The LEED certification program promotes a whole-building approach to sustainability, which necessitates the incorporation of collective factors into a building’s design and construction. “It is a fully integrated process that begins with the initial site planning for each building, continues through the detailed design phase, and carries through construction and a post-occupancy survey of building occupants,” Marsh said. “Everyone on the design and construction team — architects, engineers, construction managers — must all work together to achieve the goals established by the LEED credit system.” Notre Dame’s receipt of the LEED certification for these buildings and its ongoing participation in the rigorous certification process reflects the University’s environmental stewardship and its leadership and innovation in regard to sustainability issues, Marsh said.