Should four of the buildings in the new complex receive certification, it would bring the total number of LEED-approved homes at Elon to 10.
The new houses in The Station at Mill Point all will be among the most environmentally friendly residence facilities for college students in North Carolina when they open for the fall semester, and Elon University leaders are now in the process of applying for LEED for Homes certification for four of those buildings through the U.S. Green Building Council with a target level of Silver.
The LEED program – short for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design – is an internationally recognized standard for sustainable design and construction. The LEED for Homes program launched in 2008 specifically for single and multi-family homes.
There are four types of residential buildings in the community and one of each type is going through the formal LEED for Homes certification process. These buildings were constructed first and are nearing completion while others have been designed and are being constructed in the same manner off Williamson Avenue just south of main campus.
Should the four residential buildings at the Station at Mill Point receive LEED certification, Elon will have 10 LEED for Homes certified buildings on campus. The original six buildings are in the Loy Center and received LEED for Homes Platinum certification in November 2011.
Angel Garcia, assistant director of Residence Life, will be working and living at the Station at Mill Point and said he is especially excited about the new community and its sustainability features.
“All of the features that The Station at Mill Point is going to provide will allow for a great learning experience where premium facilities meet sustainability,” Garcia said.
The Station at Mill Point homes are about 28 percent more energy efficient than a conventional house. Buildings were designed and constructed to meet Energy Star for Homes requirements including designing and selecting energy efficiency systems.
The residential buildings have a good thermal envelope to prevent any air transfer in and out, which will save energy. Energy Star appliances were installed, including clothes washing machines. During the design and construction, the project team focused on durability planning and management to ensure the quality and sustainability of the residential buildings.
The residences are equipped with high efficiency plumbing fixtures to meet the needs of the residents and reduce potable water consumption. Dual flush toilets, low-flow shower heads and faucets are among the fixtures installed. Outdoor water use will also be minimized through an efficient irrigation system.
Efficient use of materials and resources was also key to the LEED for Homes process. Waste during construction was minimized through careful planning, and more than 80 percent of the waste generated was diverted from the landfill through recycling or reuse. Regional materials, such as framing material and cement, were used as well as materials containing recycled content including carpet and ceiling tiles.
Low-emitting materials also were used, including paints and adhesives, to minimize the exposure to volatile organic compounds.
Steps were taken to ensure good indoor air quality during and after construction. The air handling units were covered to limit dust and contaminant build-up in the system. A third-party inspector measured the air ventilation in each house to ensure proper ventilation.
Part of the educational aspect of the LEED for Homes certification is to encourage the residents to live sustainably in the houses. A Sustainable Living Guide will be provided to the residents at the Station at Mill Point to aid residents in making strides to reduce their environmental impact.
The amenity building at the Station at Mill Point is going through the LEED for New Construction certification process with a target of Silver certification. Many of the features mentioned above will also be present in the amenity building.
For more information about the sustainable features of the Station at Mill Point, visit the Office of Sustainability website.