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The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.

Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 66.35
Liaison Ben Champion
Submission Date May 2, 2017
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

University of Arizona
OP-4: Building Design and Construction

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.11 / 3.00 Benjamin Champion
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Total floor area of newly constructed or renovated building space (include projects completed within the previous five years) :
1,752,094 Square Feet

Floor area of newly constructed or renovated building space certified Living under the Living Building Challenge:
0 Square Feet

Floor area of newly constructed or renovated building space certified at each level under a rating system for design and construction used by an Established Green Building Council (GBC) :
Certified Floor Area
LEED BD+C Platinum or at the highest achievable level under another rating system 486,238 Square Feet
LEED BD+C Gold or at the 2nd highest level under another 4- or 5-tier GBC rating system 498,883 Square Feet
Certified at mid-level under a 3- or 5-tier GBC rating system for design and construction (e.g. BREEAM, CASBEE, DGNB, Green Star) 0 Square Feet
LEED BD+C Silver or at a step above minimum level under another 4- or 5-tier GBC rating system 26,786 Square Feet
LEED BD+C Certified or certified at minimum level under another GBC rating system 0 Square Feet

Floor area of newly constructed or renovated building space certified under a non-GBC rating system for design and construction (e.g. Green Globes NC, Certified Passive House):
0 Square Feet

Percentage of newly constructed or renovated building space certified under a green building rating system for design and construction:

A brief description of the green building rating system(s) used and/or a list of certified buildings and ratings:

UA uses the USGBC LEED system of ratings. All Eligible Building Criteria include both new construction and renovations from January 2012 to July 1, 2015. While not a complete listing of projects, the following are several key projects included in these figures:

1. Bryant Bannister Tree Ring Building
2. Health Sciences Education Building
3. Lowell Stevens Football Facility
4. Old Main renovation
5. Environment and Natural Resources 2 building

Floor area of newly constructed or renovated building space that is NOT certified, but that was designed and constructed in accordance with published green building guidelines and policies:
740,187 Square Feet

A copy of the green building guidelines or policies :
The green building guidelines or policies:

Do the green building guidelines or policies cover the following?:
Yes or No
Impacts on the surrounding site (e.g. guidelines to reuse previously developed land, protect environmentally sensitive areas, and otherwise minimize site impacts) Yes
Energy consumption (e.g. policies requiring a minimum level of energy efficiency for buildings and their systems) Yes
Building-level energy metering Yes
Use of environmentally preferable materials (e.g. guidelines to minimize the life cycle impacts associated with building materials) Yes
Indoor environmental quality (i.e. guidelines to protect the health and comfort of building occupants) Yes
Water consumption (e.g. requiring minimum standards of efficiency for indoor and outdoor water use) Yes
Building-level water metering Yes

A brief description of the green building guidelines or policies and/or a list or sample of buildings covered:

As stated in the presidential memorandum on Campus Sustainability at the University of Arizona dated 9/28/07, the University is committed to a leadership role in promoting sustainability on our campus and in our design and construction practices. The University has established a goal, wherever appropriate, to acquire LEED Silver Certification as established by the United States Green Building Council. Therefore the following criteria should be followed:


• New Buildings - A minimum of LEED Silver Certification for all new construction, where appropriate.

• Building Expansions - Major building expansions should anticipate LEED Silver Certification for the expansion, if possible, and if the project scope and budget support it, for the entire building. This goal will be established at project initiation.

• Renovations - Renovation projects are defined as those projects involving the alteration of a portion of an existing building. Renovations range from simple aesthetic improvements to complex physical reconfigurations and systems’ replacement. Due to the potential range of existing conditions – and the ability of a renovation project to address such conditions – it is incumbent that each renovation project undergoes an evaluation early in the budgeting and/or design process to determine if LEED certification can be achieved.

In general, for minor renovations or room specific renovations, requirements for LEED Certification will not be part of the project scope. For projects where major renovation is part of the scope, inclusion of LEED Silver Certification should be anticipated. For example, in major renovation projects that affect entire floors or buildings, LEED Silver Certification should be anticipated if reasonably feasible.


• In general, sustainable design precepts appropriate for the Sonoran Desert environment should be incorporated – water conservation, building orientation, sun exposure and shade are issues of special concern in desert environments.

• Appropriate passive solar design techniques should be incorporated and where the project scope and budget support it, solar water heating and photovoltaic systems should be considered if determined to be economically viable

• Desert appropriate landscape design, water harvesting techniques and use of the University’s reclaimed water system where available should be incorporated.

• Appropriate day lighting design should be considered to minimize the requirements for artificial lighting and to promote the interior/exterior connection of the building.

• Appropriate use of construction materials, mechanical, electrical, and plumbing systems should be selected that not only result in a building with an intended useful life of 50 to 100 years but respond to the attributes of the Sonoran Desert environment.

A brief description of how the institution ensures compliance with green building design and construction guidelines and policies:

All building projects are signed off by Planning, Design, and Construction (PDC). PDC is responsible for ensuring that all construction projects follow University of Arizona guidelines and policies.

The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

This response is an update in spring 2016 of data from 2012 through the end of FY15, with data from UA Planning, Design, and Construction department.

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.