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Facilities PHOTO © MAINSTREET STUDIO C AMPUS SPACES Green From the Ground Up Trends in sustainable construction for higher education facilities. BY JE S SIE HOULIHAN BINGEN W hile some aspects of the "green" economy have proven to be trends that didn't stand the test of time, elements of sustainable construction have grown to be strong, long-standing strategies for building owners and operators. We believe that the continued focus on sustainable building strategies is due to a combination of social demand and the fact that the resulting buildings typically have lower operating costs (due to more efﬁcient heating, cooling, lighting, and water consumption). We have found that universities and colleges are aggressive in their pursuit of sustainable strategies for several reasons. First, they are responding to the interests of their students and the community that supports them. These groups are progressive in establishing environmentally focused academic programs and implementing environmental strategies in building operations and construction. In addition, the professors who are working to expand sustainability and climate science academic programs are engaging in campus activities and influencing development goals. 58 COLLEGE PLANNING & MANAGEMENT / APRIL 2013 Also, studies in the past few years show that students now look for a college's environmental commitment when choosing an institution. It is increasingly important that higher education organizations consider implementing sustainable strategies in their current building upgrades and future construction projects. Regardless of the factors driving the continued market focus on environmentally sustainable construction strategies, we have noted some recurring trends that continue to be popular. The following sections will brieﬂy note each of these trends and some of the unique opportunities of their implementation. LEED and Other Program Standards We continue to see a maintained focus on LEED certiﬁcation. However, we haven't seen an increase in interest in this program over time. Usually the projects that are pursuing LEED certiﬁcation have an active community that is pushing for the documentation, or the development is a major public project with ongoing media coverage. Thus, the certiﬁcation is a veriﬁable way to WWW.PLANNING 4EDUCATION.COM