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Northern Kentucky University finished the expansion and renovation of the Campus Recreation Center in October 2015 Photo courtesy Northern Kentucky University
<p>Northern Kentucky University finished the expansion and renovation of the Campus Recreation Center in October 2015. (Photo courtesy Northern Kentucky University.)</p>

Northern Kentucky University Campus Recreation Center Earns LEED Gold Certification

The Campus Recreation Center earned a LEED Gold certification, making it the first building on the Northern Kentucky University campus to earn such recognition.

The Campus Recreation Center at Northern Kentucky University, Highland Heights, Kentucky, has earned Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification to become the "greenest" facility on campus.

The $48 million expansion and renovation of the 169,000-square-foot Campus Recreation Center was completed in October 2015. The U.S. Green Building Council issued the LEED certification.

“We designed the project to be LEED Silver, and we are very happy to report that the project exceeded our expectations in achieving LEED Gold status,” Syed Zaidi, assistant vice president for facilities management, Northern Kentucky University, said in a statement. “We are committed to incorporating sustainable features into the planning, design and construction of every new facility on campus, and we are pleased that those efforts have been recognized.”

The Campus Recreation Center is the first building on campus to be LEED Gold certified, but NKU’s Griffin Hall, which opened in 2011, is certified LEED Silver.

Sustainable features incorporated into the planning, design and construction of the Campus Recreation Center include:

  • Eighty geothermal wells, each 400 feet deep, heat and cool the facility;
  • The amount of waste sent to landfills was reduced by 75 percent by renovating part of an existing building rather than constructing a new one;
  • The landscape design and plant selections helped reduce the demand for water irrigation by 50 percent; and
  • The building is 36 percent more energy efficient than baseline building performance standards.

The project was designed by Omni Architects of Lexington, Kentucky, and Cannon Design of St. Louis. The lead engineering firm for the project was CMTA Consulting Engineers of Louisville, Kentucky, and the construction manager was Pepper Construction.

The Campus Recreation center is available free of charge to NKU students, faculty and staff. The public can access the facility for a membership fee.

Amenities at the Campus Rec Center include a bouldering wall, racquetball court, two gyms, an eight-lane lap pool, sauna, whirlpool, a multi-purpose room with functional training equipment, two weight rooms, a hallway of cardio equipment, personal training areas, three group fitness studios, a track and a collaborative area with computers for studying.

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