The United Illuminating Company’s new administrative and operations facilities in Orange have been awarded Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) “Gold” designation, the company announced today.
The LEED Gold designation means the two recently constructed UI facilities off Marsh Hill Road in Orange meet U.S. Green Building Council standards in a variety of categories, including energy and water efficiency; materials and resources; and indoor environmental quality.
“At UI, we encourage our customers to use energy wisely and respect the environment. We believe in practicing what we preach,” said Anthony J. Vallillo, executive vice president and chief operating officer of UI’s parent company, UIL Holdings Corporation.
“These facilities were built with sustainability in mind from the beginning. The sound choices we made during the design and construction process benefit the environment and reduce energy consumption. They will also result in lower long-term operating costs, benefiting ratepayers.”
The two buildings, which house approximately 1,100 UI and UIL employees, opened in April following two years of construction. Energy efficiency features incorporated into the facilities’ design are expected to reduce the company’s electricity usage by approximately 2.3 million kilowatt-hours a year.
“This LEED Gold designation from the U.S. Green Building Council acknowledges the years of hard work and meticulous planning that went into this project,” said Ed Drew, UI’s senior director of corporate projects, who oversaw the Central Facility effort. “I am extremely proud of the Central Facility team.”
Following are some of the facilities’ features:
• Construction: Recovered demolition debris and other materials already on the building site were used extensively as fill during the construction process, reducing the need to haul materials to and from the site by the equivalent of approximately 3,500 truckloads.
• Building Efficiency: The facilities’ roofs are reflective to reduce penetration of solar heat. Windows feature efficient polarized glass, and exterior solar shades overhang windows to reduce the intrusion of solar heat during the cooling season.
• Renewable Energy: Electricity needs are provided either by renewable energy as part of Connecticut’s Renewable Portfolio Standard requirements, or offset through the purchase of renewable energy certificates.
• Lighting: Work areas are positioned near windows to make use of natural light. The efficient lighting system employs sensors to detect natural light and adjusts accordingly.
• Ventilation: “Raised-floor” ventilation is employed throughout the buildings to augment the efficiency of the heating and cooling systems.
• Transportation: The buildings are in the center of UI’s territory and convenient to public transportation. Shuttle buses provide service to West Haven and New Haven. Motorcycle parking and bike racks are available in each building.
• Parking: Parking spaces are reserved for high-mileage conventional vehicles, electric and hybrid cars, as well as car- and van-pool vehicles.
• Recycling: Single-stream recycling is in use throughout the facilities. Bins at each workstation collect all recyclable materials, which are sorted after collection.
• Water Efficiency: Bathrooms employ “low flow” facilities that reduce overall water used. Landscaping features native plants that do not require additional irrigation.
• Indoor Air Quality: Smoking is prohibited on all building grounds, improving indoor air quality and reducing exposure to harmful second-hand smoke.