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University of Iowa News Release


Feb. 29, 2012

UI’s Hygienic Laboratory certified as ‘green’ building

Leaders of the State Hygienic Laboratory at the University of Iowa announced today that the building has earned Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.

A ceremony to highlight the certification will be held at the facility on Tuesday, April 3, with tours beginning at 3:15 p.m. and remarks at 4 p.m.

LEED is the nationally recognized benchmark for the design, construction, and operation of eco-friendly, sustainable buildings. It provides independent verification that the new laboratory is built in an environmentally responsible manner, and will be a healthy place to work.

“As the state’s environmental testing laboratory, it is important that we demonstrate how environmental sustainability can be achieved while delivering state-of-the-art service,” said Hygienic Laboratory Director Christopher Atchison. “What might be missed is the fact that constructing a facility to meet LEED standards can also produce a very welcoming place to work.”

The Hygienic Laboratory, located on the UI Research Park campus in Coralville, Iowa, incorporates the rigorous design and safety requirements of a laboratory facility along with LEED elements in five categories: sustainable sites, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, and indoor environment. The green aspects of the building include:

* More than one-third of the building products were manufactured within 500 miles of the laboratory and one-third are made from recycled content.

* Ninety percent of the building has access to natural light.

* Grounds are built with "xeriscaping," which uses plants suited to the climate so that no special watering is needed.

Two other University of Iowa buildings – the Beckwith Boat House and the Sports Medicine Clinic – recently received LEED certification at the gold level. LEED building certification is one of the ways the UI is seeking to achieve its 2020 Vision goal of net-negative energy growth on campus.

The State Hygienic Laboratory is Iowa's environmental and public health laboratory, with facilities located at the UI Research Park campus in Coralville, at the Iowa Laboratories Facility in Ankeny, and at Lakeside Lab in northwestern Iowa. For more information about the laboratory and its programs and services visit

STORY SOURCE: State Hygienic Laboratory at the University of Iowa, UI Research Park campus, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-5002

MEDIA CONTACTS: Pat Blake, 319-335-4177,, Liz Christiansen, 319-335-5516,