Sustainable Building Features

Eco-friendly Residence Hall

Your new residence hall is part of a larger project creating a vibrant student-housing community on West Campus with an urban eco-lifestyle. It’s an opportunity to bring a sustainable approach to housing design, construction and daily functioning—to construct what are essentially ‘healthier’ buildings.

 Location Linkages IconUrban Neighborhood: Community Connectivity 

  • The creation of a green urban community featuring mixed-use public amenities (i.e., café, grocery store), pedestrian-friendly sidewalks and crosswalks, and a canopy of trees 
  • Resource-efficient lighting, irrigation systems and building materials 
  • Convenient access to classes, libraries and public transportation 

 Water Efficiency for Buildings and Landscapes

Water Efficiency Icon

  • 40% reduction in water consumption
  • High-efficiency WaterSense low-flow toilets, faucets and showerheads
  • Outdoor drip irrigation

Energy & Atmosphere Icon Energy and Atmosphere

  • High-performance windows maximize interior daylight and reduce heat transfer
  • High-efficiency Energy Star Certified lighting
  • Individual programmable thermostats with automatic setbacks
  • Improved construction techniques including maximized insulation
  • High-efficiency hot water system
  • Light sensors in public spaces
  • Use of Energy Star Certified appliances, which are 30%+ more energy efficient than standard units on average
  • Reduced energy usage and greenhouse gases

Materials Resources Icon Materials and Resources

  • Reduced energy usage and greenhouse gases
  • Maximized recycling and composting opportunities for all residents
  • Over 90% of construction waste materials recycled
  • Use of locally-obtained materials with recycled content
  • Building’s wood structure provides carbon sequestration (long-term carbon storage)
  • Gold LEED rating for Poplar Hall’s energy usage and building design
  • Silver LEED rating for Cedar Apartments’ energy usage and building design

Indoor Environment Quality Icon Indoor Environmental Quality

  • Operable windows for natural ventilation
  • Personal control of lighting and heating
  • Green housekeeping
  • Smoke-free environment
  • Low-toxicity materials and finishes (i.e., carpets, paints, linoleum, adhesives, sealants)

Awareness Education Icon Education and Environmental Awareness

  • Lucid Energy Dashboard kiosks providing comparative information for energy and water use
  • A Web version of the Lucid Energy Dashboard
  • Updated sustainability pages on the HFS website
  • Continuation and growth of SEED (Students Expressing Environmental Dedication), the HFS student organization that is an active sustainability advocate and partner with HFS and the UW
  • A new Sustainable Living Community in Poplar Hall (3rd floor) in conjunction with the College of the Environment
  • Educational sustainability signage and information in Poplar Hall


Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is the United States Green Building Council's system for benchmarking the design and construction of the world's greenest buildings.

Benefits of Green Building

  • Community—minimize the strain on local infrastructures and improve the quality of life
  • Economic—improve the bottom line
  • Environmental—reduce the impacts of natural resource consumption
  • Health and Safety—enhance occupant well-being

There are four different thresholds for LEED certification that recognize varying levels of achievement: Certified, Silver, Gold and Platinum. Cedar Apartments are rated silver. Poplar Hall is rated gold.

Learn More

Icon Key

Awareness Education Icon Awareness Education

Energy & Atmosphere Icon Energy & Atmosphere

Indoor Environment Quality Icon Indoor Env. Quality

Location Linkages Icon Location Linkages

Materials Resources Icon Materials & Resources

Water Efficiency Icon Water Efficiency