|Submission Date||March 4, 2022|
Washington University in St. Louis
PRE-2: Points of Distinction
Assistant Vice Chancellor for Sustainability
Office of Sustainability
Name of the institution’s featured sustainability program, initiative, or accomplishment:
A brief description of the institution’s featured program, initiative, or accomplishment:
1: Deep commitment to green building standards for all design and construction
Washington University in St. Louis has been committed to maintaining and continually improving our leadership in sustainability through innovative ways to create high performance projects that lower carbon emissions and contribute to a healthier community. Our sustainability commitments and initiatives are focused on making contributions towards sustainable, healthy, equitable and resilient buildings and communities.
Over the last 5 years, WashU has completed one of the largest construction projects in our history - The East End Transformation on the main academic campus, the Danforth Campus. This project comprised of 5 new buildings and an underground garage interconnected by an expansive green roof that doubles as a park. Due to the scale and importance of the East End Transformation, as well as the accelerating climate crisis, leadership recognized the unique opportunity and imperative to double down on our sustainability leadership from very early in the planning process. In addition, the university had a parallel opportunity to continue advancing the practice and art of environmental performance through the renovation of an historic building, January Hall.
In 2021, Washington University was the recipient of U.S. Green Building Council West North Central Region Leadership Award for its five buildings on the Danforth Campus in St. Louis, MO, achieving LEED Platinum certification at the same time. The USGBC Leadership Awards recognize the exemplary leadership of individuals and organizations contributing to the creation of sustainable, healthier, equitable and resilient buildings, cities and communities. The West North Central region includes: ND, MN, WI, SD, IA, KS, and MO. 2020 USGBC LEED Platinum certification were awarded to: Jubel Hall, Weil Hall, Schnuck Pavilion, Sumers Welcome Center and January Hall.
As part of the commitment to green building, planners and designers have focused efforts on demanding healthier building materials and furniture selection process with the goal to provide building users with healthier environments and to leverage the university’s buying power to influence the building materials industry.
In recognition of the distinctive leadership demonstrated through this consistent approach, The East End Transformation at Washington University has received accolades, including:
• SCUP Excellence in Planning 2020: https://www.scup.org/award-winner/washington-university-in-st-louis-east-end-transformation-of-the-danforth-campus/
• AIA St. Louis Design Awards 2019
• AIA Philadelphia Award in 2020
• AGC Keystone Award 202
• Building St. Louis Award Finalist 2020
In addition, The East End project has received extensive press coverage in major nationally recognized publications such as a cover story in Architect Magazine (https://www.architectmagazine.com/design/washington-universitys-east-end-transformation_o), articles in Architectural Record, Architect’s Newspaper, Metropolis, Blueprint and the St. Louis Post Dispatch.
Which of the following impact areas does the featured program, initiative, or accomplishment most closely relate to?:
Website URL where more information about the accomplishment may be found:
STARS credit in which the featured program, initiative, or accomplishment is reported (if applicable):
A photograph or document associated with the featured program, initiative, or accomplishment:
Name of a second highlighted sustainability program/initiative/accomplishment:
A brief description of the second program/initiative/accomplishment:
In fall 2020, Washington University in St. Louis led the charge in planning and convening the Midwest Climate Summit. The summit and its accompanying think tank session were cross-sector, high-level discussions involving a key group of organizations with a shared commitment to advancing climate ambition in the Midwest.
In the year and a half since, several similar think tank sessions followed, with many members networking with one another in between meetings to pursue further climate work. It became clear that there was a strong interest in long-term collaboration to advance climate action.
Those efforts culminated Jan. 28 with the launch of the newly formed Midwest Climate Collaborative (MCC) during a virtual summit. Washington University is among 30 founding members of the collaborative, as well as one of the lead coordinators. The initiative has four key aims:
- Leveraging science and research to address climate issues
- Shaping public understanding and policy
- Accelerating climate solutions
- Developing future leaders
Which impact areas does the second program/initiative/accomplishment most closely relate to?:
Air & Climate
Coordination & Planning
Website URL where more information about the second program/initiative/accomplishment may be found:
STARS credit in which the second program/initiative/accomplishment is reported (if applicable):
A photograph or document associated with the second program/initiative/accomplishment:
Name of a third highlighted program/initiative/accomplishment:
A brief description of the third program/initiative/accomplishment:
WashU has a regional commitment to supporting public transportation. The University was involved in the development of the MetroLink station at the Cortex Innovation Community and increasing service to campus areas. Free U-passes are offered to all benefits-eligible staff and full-time students. The U-pass provides access to the region’s MetroLink trains and MetroBus. Link: https://sustainability.wustl.edu/st-louis-transit-moving-forward/
The Centennial Greenway passes through campus and connects to Forest Park. The University has been assisting in developing the Brickline Greenway, which will connect Forest Park to the Gateway Arch. In 2021, WashU was designated a gold-level Bicycle Friendly University by the League of American Bicyclists. Link: WashU Named a Gold Bicycle Friendly University https://sustainability.wustl.edu/washu-named-a-gold-bicycle-friendly-university/
Additional ways that WashU supports multimodal transportation:
>WashU has a dedicated alternative transportation coordinator, housed in Parking & Transportation Services. She works closely with the Office of Sustainability on promoting sustainable transportation programming.
>The Active Commuter Hub is an amenity that gives WashU members access to showers and lockers to facilitate the transition from an active commute to the work day. Link: Bike, Run, Drive: My Active WashU Commute https://sustainability.wustl.edu/bike-run-drive-my-active-washu-commute/
Which impact areas does the third program/initiative/accomplishment most closely relate to?:
Coordination & Planning
Wellbeing & Work
Website URL where more information about the third program/initiative/accomplishment may be found:
STARS credit in which the third program/initiative/accomplishment is reported (if applicable):
A photograph or document associated with the third program/initiative/accomplishment: