LEED Sets the Bar High for Buildings
A DECADE AGO, the U.S. Green Building Council created a rigorous environmental protocol for the construction and renovation of buildings. LEED (Leadership in Environmental Energy and Design) standards were so demanding that by 2007, only 12 buildings in New York State had been LEED-certified. One — and the oldest among them — was Hamilton's Skenandoa House residence, formerly the Psi Upsilon house, built in 1922. "It's a unique club," said architect Charles Belson of the EwingCole firm.
LEED requires adherence to standards in five categories: sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, and indoor environmental quality. Skenandoa House relies on efficient geothermal heating and cooling, renewable electrical power, and other energy-efficient measures and recycled materials.
Rededicated in 2004 in honor of the Oneida chief and longtime friend of Hamilton founder Samuel Kirkland, Skenandoa was awarded the Silver LEED plaque in an April 2007 ceremony.
Among those addressing the gathering were Brian Patterson, Bear Clan representative to the Oneida Nation Men's Council. "I offer my nation's admiration for the leadership of Hamilton College," he said, as well as for its students, in "setting the pace for environmental concern that will affect our young people collectively." Today, all major construction projects at Hamilton, including the renovated and expanded Kirner-Johnson Building, meet LEED standards.
Return to Operations, More Aware and More Efficient