With an energy-producing canopy, low-flow water fixtures, and a design that minimizes light pollution, UNLV's newest building is also its first to target the gold standard in green design.
Greenspun Hall sits on a prime location on Maryland Parkway next to the Student Union. It is targeting a Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) gold certification.
The 120,000-square-foot building consists of four interconnected towers. Its photovoltaic array shades the facility's distinctive courtyard and will offset about 13 percent of the building's energy consumption. A chilled-beam heating and cooling system is expected to save $83,000 per year over traditional systems.
The facility brought most of the Greenspun College of Urban Affairs units into one location to foster collaboration among departments. The college -- which includes environmental studies, social work, journalism, public administration, criminal justice, communication studies, and marriage and family therapy -- addresses many quality-of-life issues in the region. Its 190-seat auditorium hosts classes as well as community events.
The construction project is an example of the kind of public-private partnerships UNLV is forming to advance as an institution amidst tight budget times. The Greenspun Family Foundation contributed $37 million, or 40 percent of the building's construction costs, for the project. It is the largest single donation to UNLV and one of the largest in state history. State funds covered the rest of the project's costs.