Approach to Energy Conservation and Sustainability for Design and Construction

The University of Michigan has a long history of environmental stewardship in its approach to facility design and construction. With the significant growth taking place on the Ann Arbor campus – 17 percent population increase and a 22 percent increase in building area from fiscal year 2004 – 2013 – incorporating energy reduction in building design is one of the most effective ways for U-M to reduce its carbon footprint.

In October 2008, the University of Michigan adopted the goal of exceeding American Association of Heating, Refrigeration and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) 90.1-2007 energy code requirements by 30% for all projects with a construction budget of $10,000,000 or greater.  U-M requires the incorporation of numerous mandatory energy conservation measures on projects, requires comprehensive evaluation of additional energy efficiency measures, and requires comprehensive modeling of energy usage for proposed projects and development of energy impact statements at each phase of design.

To support the implementation of sustainable design concepts for new construction, U-M has adopted Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) Silver certification as mandatory for all new buildings and additions (new construction) with a construction budget of $10,000,000 or greater.

Several sections of U-M’s Design Guidelines for Design and Construction outline U-M’s detailed requirements related to both energy efficiency as well as sustainable design and environmental stewardship: