A project that expanded Colby College's Cotter Union by 18,000 square feet with additions of Pulver Pavilion and a new bookstore, was LEED certified at the silver level by the U.S. Green Building Council, college officials announced May 1. LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is the accepted national standard for rating green or sustainable building construction, and silver is a notch above basic LEED certification.
Pulver Pavilion, which opened in 2007, was described as a "living room for students" and has fulfilled its planned role as a hub of campus life. The new bookstore, a two-story, 9,000-square-foot addition on the east side of the building, opened in June 2008.
Among 29 categories where the project received points for green elements or technologies contributing to the LEED-silver rating are:
- optimal energy performance from a high-efficiency building envelope, windows, and heating and cooling systems;
- water-conserving faucets and toilets and waterless urinals that helped cut water consumption by more than 50 percent from the calculated baseline;
- innovation in design of various green aspects of the building;
- reuse or recycling of approximately 88.5 percent of on-site generated construction waste and use of locally available construction materials with high recycled content;
- a commitment to purchase renewable power to offset 100 percent of the annual electric energy use for at least two years;
- low-emitting interior finishes (paints, coatings, adhesives, sealants, carpets) for air quality;
- use of vegetable oil rather than petroleum-based hydraulic oil in the elevator;
- use of native, drought-tolerant plants;
- use of Green Seal cleaning agents; and
- high-efficiency motors for pumps and fans.
Key members of the Physical Plant Department team managing the Cotter project included Director of Physical Plant Patricia Murphy, P.E.; College Architect Joe Feely, AIA, project manager; Environmental Program Manager Dale DeBlois, assistant project manager; and Engineering Technician Andy Gockel, LEED documentation coordinator. They and the entire Physical Plant Department project management team are professionally accredited by the LEED program, which signals the College's commitment to environmental initiatives in certified buildings as well as smaller renovation projects.
Colby’s student center, Cotter Union, was transformed into a hub for student social life as the result of a $10-million expansion and renovation project completed in August 2007. The addition of a new bookstore, which opened in 2008, further enhanced Cotter Union as a center of campus life and student activities.The centerpiece of the project is the Pulver Pavilion, a 7,000-square-foot meeting area that bridges the two original wings of Cotter Union with new facilities including a café, snack bar, student mailroom, and small meeting and social spaces.
Built in 1985 to provide a center for student social life after fraternities were disbanded, Cotter Union saw 14,000 square feet of existing space remodeled and 1,000 square feet of new support space beyond the Pulver Pavilion addition in the first phase of construction, completed in 2007.
A second phase of the Cotter Union expansion project—construction of a 9,000-square-foot wing to house the Colby Bookstore—was approved by trustees in January 2007 and opened for the fall semester in 2008.
Designed by the award-winning architectural firm Bohlin Cywinski Jackson (which designed Colby’s new Diamond Building and Bill Gates's home), the reconfiguration of Cotter Union created a "living room" for Colby students.
Colby received the naming gift for the Pulver Pavilion from trustee David Pulver '63, his wife, Carol, and their daughter, Stephanie Pulver '93.