back to all projects

Case Study of Dana Building for DoE LEED-Certified Project Database


The S.T. Dana Building is a 100-year old, Beaux Arts academic building that houses the School of Natural Resources and Environment (SNRE) at the University of Michigan.  In the 1990's, SNRE began planning for a major renovation to the aging structure.  This project had two primary goals: to create a building that is a comfortable place to learn and work and that simultaneously demonstrates state-of-the-art environmentally conscious design.  The 25 million dollar renovation resulted in a building that makes a statement - a building where environmental principles are not only taught, but upheld and demonstrated to the community.

Description of Environmental Aspects (< 200 words):
Significant aspects of the Dana renovation that contributed to the LEED gold rating include: 31 percent reduction in water use through installation of low-flow plumbing fixtures, composting toilets and waterless urinals; 30 percent reduction in energy use through installation of high efficiency lighting and one of the first installations of a ceiling-mounted radiant cooling system in the U.S.; and retention of the historic 1903 structure and shell, plus more than half of the original interior elements, while upgrading the building to create a state-of-the-art educational environment

Materials normally discarded during construction (bricks, attic timbers, and old windows and doors) were reused throughout the building, thus diverting material from landfills. Beautiful southern yellow pine attic timbers were made into conference tables and wood trim.  Additionally, products such as rubber flooring made from recycled rubber, ceiling panels made from biocomposites, bathroom tiles made from recycled glass and toilet partitions made from recycled plastic bottles were carefully selected to reduce environmental impacts.

United States Green Building Council
Research Areas
Urban Systems and Built Environment