Sustainability in the Residence Halls
Building Projects

Whether it be routine maintenance or planning and undertaking renovation and construction projects within the residence halls, Maryland's Department of Residential Facilities makes every effort to incorporate the following sustainability features and initiatives as a part of the project:

  • Use 100% Green Seal cleaning products in restrooms, lounges, lobbies, hallways, elevators, laundry rooms and other public areas within residence halls.
  • Supply restrooms with 100% recycled toilet tissue and paper hand towels.
  • Recover and re-use steam from mechanical rooms after it has generated heat and domestic hot water. This steam condensate is recirculated through the campus energy plant and saves water and water heating costs.
  • Emphasize non-chemical techniques and strategies (e.g., sanitation, screens, trapping) for control of insects and mice, while minimizing use and application of pesticides and using only effective and low-toxicity products registered with the federal EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) and the state Department of Agriculture.
  • Assign a LEED-accredited professional to advise design teams.
  • Ensure erosion and sediment control during construction.
  • Install energy-efficient fluorescent lights that use 1/3 less electricity than standard fluorescent tubes.
  • Install LED-style emergency exit signs that operate on five watts or less compared to standard exit signs that consume 40 watts.
  • Install energy efficient ENERGY STARĀ® appliances and equipment in laundry rooms, kitchens and building mechanical rooms.
  • Install solar reflective roof surface to reduce summer heat gain and lowers air conditioning energy use.
  • Install energy efficient insulated windows.
  • Install dual-flow water-conserving toilets (up for liquid, down for solid waste) and low-flow shower heads and sink faucets.
  • Use replaceable carpet tiles instead of conventional carpets to limit repair and replacement costs.
  • Install upholstered oak furniture in lounges and suites/apartments that is manufactured from locally grown and managed forests and coated with 0% VOC (volatile organic compound) finishes.
  • Choose low-emitting materials in products such as adhesives, sealants, paints, coatings, and carpets.
  • Choose a percentage of building construction materials that contain recycled content.
  • Choose a percentage of building construction materials that are extracted, harvested, and manufactured within 500 miles from campus.
  • Salvage and re-use metals, fixtures such as locks, doorknobs, etc. and recycle concrete, asphalt and other construction waste instead of taking to landfills.
  • Replace a percentage of hardscape (concrete, asphalt) with grass, trees and other native or non invasive plantings.
  • Install space for bicycle parking.
  • Maintain recycling containers in convenient indoor and outdoor locations.

A few notable sustainable "firsts" achieved by Residential Facilities and/or their public private partners:

  • First use on campus of a storm water irrigation system (Washington Quad) that stores and recirculates up to 10,000 gallons of rainwater to planting beds.
  • First green roof on campus (Cumberland Hall) has about 8,000 square feet of plant material that reduces storm water run-off and helps insulate the building from summer heat and winter cold. About 12,000 native plantings attract birds, butterflies and other wildlife.
  • First residence hall on campus (Public Private Partnership South Campus Commons #7) to achieve LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Gold designation and first building on campus to achieve LEED Gold designation.