Our campus has more than 50 buildings which house the living, working, and learning environments of more than 25,000 students, faculty and staff. These buildings are an essential part of Towson’s history and community, as well as significant contributors to the campus’s carbon footprint. We are taking steps to make our buildings more efficient, sustainable structures that can serve the campus for decades to come.
Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Building Practices
Since 2007 we have been committed to building all new construction projects to the US Green Building Council’s LEED Silver standards. As a benchmark for the sustainability of campus buildings, LEED provides a framework for identifying and implementing measurable green building design, construction, operations and maintenance solutions. To achieve certification, projects must meet a number of requirements related to sustainability, including measures related to energy usage, water efficiency, waste reduction, indoor air quality and the level of impact on the surrounding landscape.
The campus currently boasts two LEED Gold certified buildings, the College of Liberal Arts building and the West Village Commons building, as well as a number of other buildings built to LEED Silver standard. The buildings contain high-performance HVAC systems, water-efficient landscaping, recycling areas, low-flow toilets, bike racks, and other sustainable features such as a green roof and shower/locker facilities to promote alternative transportation. Other buildings that have been constructed/renovated to LEED Silver standards but not certified include the West Village Residence Halls, Newell Hall, Public Safety, and Tiger Arena. Visit the Facilities Management Campus Construction page to learn about current and future construction at Towson.
Campus Master Plan
Developed by the Office of Facilities Planning, the 2009 Campus Master Plan embodies Towson University’s long-term vision for the future physical development of campus. Addressing both University System of Maryland requirements and community concerns, the plan sets forth a framework for the development of academic and student life facilities, as well as the roads, parking, utilities and infrastructure to support these buildings. The "smart growth" strategy within the campus master plan aims to preserve and recreate natural, green areas of campus. While implementing the plan, the university plans to convert more than five acres of paved campus area to open green space, helping to offset the campus's carbon footprint.
Other actions we have taken to incorporate environmental design into our buildings include:
In 2014, TU joined the U.S. Department of Energy Better Buildings Challenge, committing to reduce the energy consumption of campus buildings 20% by 2020. As part of the challenge, the university will share best practices with other higher education institutions and use insights learned from fellow participants to inform campus energy reduction strategies and projects.
Lighting Retrofit: In 2012, the university completed an $8 million Energy Services Contractor (ESCO) project to increase the energy efficiency of campus lighting. The project reduced campus electricity use by 10% and saves more than $1 million in energy costs each year.
Furniture for all campus buildings is purchased through Maryland Correctional Enterprises (MCE), whose products are certified by the GreenGuard Environmental Institute for their low emissions. This helps to maintain good indoor air quality in campus buildings.
In 2009 - 2010, Smith Hall classrooms 211, 424, 473, and 583 through 587 were renovated to include high-efficiency T5 lighting and occupancy sensor controls. These improvements resulted in a 50% to 75% reduction in lighting energy in these areas. Similarly, Burdick Hall classrooms 111 and 112 were retrofitted with high-efficiency T5 lighting which resulted in a 55% reduction in lighting energy.
The Newell Den's Mangiamo eatery was renovated during summer 2010 and now features LED lighting. The switch resulting in a 70% energy savings over the existing compact fluorescent down lights.
The Administration Building renovation reused the entire exterior shell and structural system of the existing building as well as 75% of the building's interior walls, resulting in a significant reduction in construction waste. The renovation also replaced the building's single pane windows with high-performance, insulated windows that improve the building’s energy efficiency.
The 7800 building renovation utilized a high performance, back-ventilated terra cotta exterior wall system which provides increased insulation and reduces air infiltration into the building, eliminating mold and moisture and improving indoor air quality. The project also included the restoration of the Glen Stream, which provides for the natural filtration of storm water runoff. The restoration stabilized stream erosion.
The Child Care Center was built with passive solar heating and summer shading, making extensive use of day lighting throughout the building while reducing the energy need related to heating and cooling. The building uses a radiant floor heating system for energy efficient heating and improved indoor air quality. It’s surrounding areas feature native landscaping to require minimal artificial irrigation.
The College of Liberal Arts (CLA) building utilizes recycled materials from the Lida Lee Tall demolition. Nearly 93% of the Lida Lee Tall building was recycled, with much of it being reused on site.
Office of Sustainability
General Services Building, Room 132D (map)
Hours: Monday - Friday, 8 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.