02 Jul University Park Student Living Complex Earns Green Certification
Boca Raton, FL (July 2, 2015)…University Park, the four-story, 159-unit student housing project in Boca Raton, has been certified as a Florida Green High-Rise Residential Building by the Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC), after it successfully met the sustainability standards established in the FGBC Florida Green High-Rise Residential Building certification program. Developed by the joint venture partnership of Rosemurgy Properties, Giles Capital Group, and Lewis Rental Properties, University Park opened to students on April 30, 2015.
The designation represents achievements in a number of categories, such as energy efficiency, water conservation, site preservation, indoor air quality, materials, and durability, including disaster mitigation.
FGBC-certified projects complete a technically rigorous building assessment and construction process to promote design and construction practices that reduce the negative environmental impacts of the building, improve occupant health and well-being, and reduce operating costs for the owner.
Located in the heart of Boca Raton, University Park is convenient to restaurants, shopping, and local colleges. A shuttle service to campuses, a swimming pool, courtyard gathering place, fitness center, juice bar, and game room all serve to create a destination place for students, reducing the need for automobiles.
When planning the project, the design and construction teams utilized building information modeling (BIM) to optimize the efficiencies related to design, materials, construction, and operations.
The energy performance of the building is 30 percent better than required by the Florida Energy Code, augmented by the installation of Energy Star washers, dryers, refrigerators, and ceiling fans in each unit. Light colored interior finishes with a high solar reflective value also help to improve the building’s energy performance.
At least 80 percent of the plants and trees incorporated into the landscape are drought tolerant. Other water saving landscaping approaches include soil moisture sensors, mulching of beds, a properly installed irrigation system to avoid overlapping coverage, the use of micro-irrigation in beds, and onsite training for facility managers.
Indoor water conservation measures include the installation of dual-flush toilets, low-flow faucets rated at 1.0 gallons per minute (gpm) or less, low-flow showerheads, and high-efficiency washing machines with a water factor of 6.0 gallons per cycle or less.
The project was a greyfield redevelopment, meaning it transformed an abandoned or under-utilized commercial area, thus making use of existing utilities and roadways and reducing infrastructure costs. This type of “repurposing” has significant economic benefits to the community.
Eighty percent or more of the roof incorporated high-reflective and high emissivity material, thus reducing the heat island effect. The heat island effect is when buildings and pavement absorb a significant amount of light and radiation and emit it as heat, thus increasing the temperature of cities.
Through the proper selection of paints, stains, adhesives, sealants, and materials with low volatile organic compounds (VOCs), a healthier indoor air quality was achieved for occupants. Other air quality measures included prohibiting smoking throughout the building and protecting all ducts, range hoods and bath fans during construction to avoid pollutants from entering and contaminating the duct systems.
About the Florida Green Building Coalition
The Florida Green Building Coalition (FGBC) is a nonprofit 501(C)3 Florida corporation founded in 2000 dedicated to improving the built environment. Its mission is “to lead and promote sustainability with environmental, economic, and social benefits through regional education and certification programs.” FGBC certification programs are the only standards developed with climate specific criteria to address issues caused by Florida’s hot-humid environment and natural disasters. Currently, FGBC is the leading certifier of green projects in Florida. For more information about the FGBC “Florida Green” certification programs visit www.floridagreenbuilding.org.