HOK Sport Venue Event Achieves Sustainable Design Milestone at UConn

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HOK Sport Venue Event has designed the 'greenest' collegiate sports facility - the University of Connecticut's football training facility has received LEED SIlver Certification. The firm also recently hired a sustainable design coordinator to amplify its green design efforts.

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We appreciate the University's commitment to sustainability

The HOK Sport Venue Event-designed University of Connecticut football training facility has achieved LEED™ Silver Certification by the United States Green Building Council. This marks the first LEED Silver Certified collegiate sports facility in the United States.

The Burton Family Football Complex/Mark R. Shenkman Training Center received 34 points toward LEED Certification. Projects achieve basic certification at 26 points.

"We appreciate the University's commitment to sustainability," said Scott Radecic, HOK senior principal. "While the principle of sustainable design is nothing new to us, we will continue to pursue LEED Certification on all warranted projects into the future."

The effort to achieve LEED Certification was less than one percent of the overall project budget, and sustainable design elements will pay for themselves in five to 10 years.

Situated in a valley bordering other campus sports facilities, the football training facility was designed to resemble an eroded piece of stone within the valley's stream. Site reclamation was an important part of the sustainable design effort.

The project also received sustainable design credits for:

  •     Use of energy-efficient infrared heating units, rather than traditional heating
  •     Conserving energy and water during the construction process
  •     Creating a healthy indoor air quality
  •     Selection of recycled construction materials
  •     Recycling construction material waste
  •     Incorporating permeable pavement and bioretention swales around the facility to help Infiltrate and treat storm water and reduce runoff.

"This is, perhaps, one of the most significant milestones in the history of collegiate sports facility design," said Rick Martin, HOK Sport Venue Event managing principal. "We will look to the University of Connecticut project as a model in our continued emphasis of sustainable design as a standard."

HOK has a long commitment to sustainable design. The firm was a founding member of the U.S. Green Building Council, participating in the development of LEED standards. The firm literally wrote the book on green design, The HOK Guidebook to Sustainable Design, which is used in many classrooms and professional practices today. HOK Sport Venue Event currently is designing the first two professional ballparks to become LEED Certified, the new Nationals Park opening in 2008 and the new Twins Ballpark set to open in 2010. The firm also is designing a convention center, a collegiate football stadium and two professional arenas toward LEED Certification standards. Internationally, the firm has designed such projects as Stadium Australia and the Nanjing Sports Park, both recognized around the world as benchmarks for sustainable design.

To further advance the firm's emphasis of a sustainable practice and its leadership role in sustainable design, HOK has hired a sustainability coordinator. Stephanie Graham brings more than 30 years of experience as both an interior designer and an expert in sustainable design implementation.

For more than a decade, she has been focused on leading design teams interested in incorporating sustainable architecture and LEED Certification into their projects. She has worked with a variety of collegiate, professional and civic teams and owners to lead sustainable design workshops to identify sustainable design strategies; she also has managed the sustainable design process on a variety of project types. Her efforts include advising clients on the interpretation of credit achievement as well as documentation for certification.

As sustainability coordinator at HOK Sport Venue Event, Stephanie will lead the firm's efforts to incorporate sustainable design principles into every project. She also will lead training efforts to help HOK employees become LEED Accredited.

"With Stephanie's addition, HOK is poised to continue its expertise in sustainable design," said Martin. "Stephanie and our 40 LEED Accredited Professionals will give our clients peace of mind that their ballparks, arenas, stadiums and convention centers are responsive to the environment and long-standing, environmentally-friendly civic icons."

About HOK Sport Venue Event:
HOK Sport Venue Event is one of the world's leading design firms. Their focus is the creation of exceptional gathering spaces, from stadiums and arenas to convention centers and amphitheaters. The firm also has made a worldwide mark managing many aspects of the events themselves, from Olympic Games to Super Bowls. Their architects and event managers are the world's finest and most experienced, drawing from the combined expertise of more than 825 projects with construction value exceeding $20 billion. The company's client list is diverse and comprehensive; it includes 24 Major League Baseball franchises, 30 NFL franchises, 80 professional and civic arena clients, 40 soccer and rugby teams, 120 colleges and universities, 40 convention and performing arts center clients and 30 major events. With offices in Brisbane, Australia; London, England; Nashville, Tennessee; Knoxville, Tennessee; Denver, Colorado; and Kansas City, Missouri, their reach is worldwide.

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