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The Sophia Gordon Center for Creative and Performing Arts project has been awarded LEED Gold Certification

The Sophia Gordon Center for Creative and Performing Arts has been awarded LEED Gold Certification. Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) is an environmentally friendly organization that rewards institutions for building responsibly.

The project adaptively reused and extended the life of the old Mainstage Theater, providing a state-of-the-art learning environment for our students for the next 50 years in what President John Keenan has calls the “largest classroom on campus.”

“The concerted effort to achieve Gold Certification ties back to our sustainability goal of reaching LEED Gold for all new construction and LEED Silver for renovations. With the challenging Sophia Gordon Center renovation exceeding that goal with a score of 68 points, we set a strong foundation for our next building project,” said Ben Szalewicz, assistant vice president for campus planning and facilities management.

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design has four levels of certification based on the LEED points the building receives. These are classified as Certified (40 – 49 points), Silver (50 – 59 points), Gold (60 – 79 points), and Platinum (80+ points).

A partnership between Salem State, the Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance (DCAMM) and architects Leers Weinzapfel Associates, the project demonstrates a 28% energy cost reduction and achieves a 32% reduction in energy consumption compared to a baseline building. More than 75% of the existing building structures were reused and the entire project site was redesigned to improve building accessibility and public entry.

Kimberly Burnett
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