Western has established an operational policy that all new building construction and retrofits will achieve a minimum LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) silver certification. Currently, Western has 1 LEED GOLD certified building (Claudette MacKay-Lassonde Pavillion) and 1 LEED SILVER certified building (McIntosh Gallery). Eight additional buildings are registered for LEED certification. They are:
- Stevenson Hall/Lawson Hall
- Richard Ivey School of Business (Phase 2 under construction)
- Physics and Astronomy Building
- Medical Education Centre (Under construction)
- Ontario Hall (New Residence) (Under construction)
- Music Building (Design Phase)
- WindEEE (Under construction)
- Fraunhofer Project Centre (Under construction)
More information about these buildings can be found below. Campus and community members wishing to learn more about these green buildings can register for a tour at sustainability.uwo.ca/
In 2009, Western officially opened the Claudette MacKay-Lassonde
Pavilion, the first LEED certified building on campus. Dubbed “the green building”, this
$22-million, 45,000 square-foot structure exemplifies environmental
building practices in addition to housing research projects in green
technologies, processes and materials.
- The roof of the “green building” contains seven species of
drought-resistant sedum, a hardy garden plant. The soil and plants
insulate the building for sound and increase cooling and heating
efficiency throughout the year.
- Sustainability in Design of Facilities: The University will incorporate sustainability of the environment into
the planning and design process. This includes promoting energy
conservation in the operation of facilities, provision of facilities to
support alternate transportation arrangements, and the protection of
natural and wetland areas throughout the campus. Building designs should
recognize the use of buildings as learning tools as well as learning
environments and should provide examples of sustainable designs for
- Green Space and the Campus Environment: Planning should include preservation of the grounds and development of a
Landscape Plan, including the allocation of lands for the Sherwood Fox
Arboretum and enhancement of courtyards and other spaces, while trying
to use species native to Southwestern Ontario whenever considering new
planting/landscaping. In the development of plans for new facilities,
the preservation of trees needs to be a critical part of the planning.
When it is necessary to remove trees, they will be replaced in numbers
equal to or greater than the trees being removed. In addition, the
University will commit to enhancing the landscape with plantings
throughout the campus.
- Roof Top: The Pavilion has a roof like no other on campus.
Grasses and local native plants have been planted on
roof surface. The green space controls rain run-off and reduces the
heat island affect, by naturally absorbing the sun's rays as opposed to
reflecting them back into the atmosphere.
- Renewable Energy: A wind turbine and solar panels on the roof generate
electricity for the building, and a ground source heating system helps
cool the building during summer and heat it during winter.
- Electrical: By design, the building is energy efficient.
Natural light and open areas are plentiful in order to reduce energy
consumed for lighting. It has been proposed in some areas that a light
meter will automatically dim lighting fixtures that are being
superceded by the sunlight that is filtering in.
- Plumbing: Low water use faucets are used, along with
dual flush toilet and low flow urinals. Most notable for the plumbing
infrastructure is the provision of a cistern. This water-recovery
system will gather rain runoff and contribute a portion of the water
for use in the toilets and urinals.
- Ventilation: A heat recovery system will be in place on the fume
hood exhaust system on top of the building. The reusable heat source
will be coupled to the traditional heating system and contribute to
- Areas that are vacant for long periods of time will have the amount
of air flow reduced, thereby decreasing the demand on the heating or
cooling supply and the energy used to circulate it.
- Construction: Even the construction process of the new building is
governed by strict guidelines. Before a single grain of dirt is turned
on the site, the process of sustainable construction is underway.
- Contractors: will be accountable for a clean and efficient
construction site, putting less strain on the environment around that
The McIntosh Gallery was officially certified on October, 9, 2012. It is the nation's first building to be certified under the new, more stringent green building guidelines, LEED NC-2009. For the gallery, energy efficiency was key, seeing that the building was over 70 years old when it was renovated:
- The building’s windows were replaced with high-performance double- and triple-glazed windows.
- Sensors were installed to control lights and ventilation.
- Highly efficient, long-lasting LED lights were installed helping to better showcase the art.
The renovation efforts also inspired McIntosh staff to develop some of their own green initiatives – like targeting paper use to using only locally sourced walnut frames for art.
For more information about this renovation, please view the article published in Western News.