Design, Construction & Maintenance

Image of Building with lights glowing on a dark cloudy evening. Iowa State's design, construction and maintenance staff provides students, faculty, staff and visitors with sustainable facilities where they can learn, teach, work and engage with others. This commitment is driven by Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), a system that awards certified buildings with sustainability achievement levels of Silver, Gold and Platinum based on eight categories: location and transportation; sustainable sites; water efficiency; energy and atmosphere; material and resources; indoor environmental quality; innovation; and regional priority. With 22 LEED-certified buildings and counting, Iowa State now claims 49% of all LEED-certified buildings within the state's regent university system. Although not all projects are a candidate for LEED certification, Iowa State incorporates sustainable design and features into all of its construction and renovation endeavors.

In 2012, Iowa State hired a Coordinator of Sustainable Design and Construction to provide additional leadership related to LEED certification. The ongoing work of Planning, Design and Construction, along with maintenance teams employed by Facilities Services, also help ensure that all buildings meet LEED standards. These practices and guidelines include installing cost-saving LED lights, planting "living roofs" that reduce storm water run-off and using recycled-content materials such as carpeting, dry wall, ceiling tile and steel to construct buildings.

For more information about LEED and other building-related projects, contact Coordinator of Sustainable Design and Construction Kerry Dixon at

"LEED has transformed the design and construction industries -- designers and builders are now aware of what they are using to build buildings and the effect the space and materials have on occupants. We look at how energy is used by the building, and LEED has pushed the codes to improve the energy efficiency of all building types, making all buildings more efficient. For Iowa State, it is important that we build our buildings to be more efficient than code."

-Kerry Dixon, Coordinator of Sustainable Design and Construction