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Press Release:

  MEDIA CONTACT:  Lisa Freed

FAU, UF Celebrate Groundbreaking of New Joint-Use Facility on FAU’s Davie Campus

DAVIE, FL (January 21, 2009) – Florida Atlantic University, the University of Florida and community leaders gathered today to commemorate the groundbreaking of the new FAU/UF joint-use facility on FAU’s Davie’s campus.  The 75,000-square-foot facility, designed to meet U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) silver certification, is scheduled to be completed in Fall 2010.

“This is a place where vitally important knowledge about the Everglades and the entirety of South Florida’s very sensitive and complex ecosystem will be discovered, analyzed, understood and passed along to future generations,” said FAU President Frank T. Brogan. “FAU is very proud to partner with the University of Florida in this far-reaching research and educational initiative, which holds tremendous promise for our state.”

The $30 million facility, funded entirely by Public Education Capital Outlay (PECO) allocations from the state legislature, will be constructed on 25 acres of land transferred to FAU from the University of Florida. It will be shared between FAU and UF’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) to study Everglades restoration and environmental science. The first floor is designed for classroom use, including a 100-person tiered classroom. The second floor will house research labs for UF scientists, and the third and fourth floors will combine FAU science labs with office space for FAU’s College of Arts and Letters and other departments.

FAU continues to promote environmental quality and resource conservation through the sustainable design, green architecture and recycling in its planning and development of the FAU/UF joint-use facility with the following characteristics:

  • The FAU/UF joint-use facility site does not include sensitive site elements and restrictive land types.  The four-story design of the building also minimizes site disruption.
  • The facility will reduce pollution and land development impact from automobile use by providing bicycle racks and changing rooms for the building users, and showers for researchers.  Also, 5 percent of the parking for the building will be dedicated to low-emission and fuel-efficient vehicles.
  • The facility will maximize water-efficiency by reducing the burden on municipal water supply and wastewater systems.  It will utilize low-flow fixtures and indigenous landscaping that will require little or no irrigation.  The facility also will reduce its water consumption by a minimum of 20 percent.
  • The facility incorporates a building envelope and highly efficient HVAC systems that maximize energy performance.  A minimum goal will be to reduce the energy consumption of the building by 14 percent.
  • During construction, the contractor will be diverting at least 50 percent of the site waste from landfills.
  • Twenty percent of the construction material cost will consist of recycled material, and 20 percent of all building materials will be recovered or manufactured locally.
  • A minimum of 50 percent of all wood-based materials in the facility will come from certified forests.
  • All materials will be low-emitting materials, which will reduce the quantity of indoor air contaminants that are odorous, irritating or harmful to the comfort of installers and occupants.
  • Seventy-five percent of all occupied spaces will utilize natural lighting.

The FAU/UF joint-use facility was designed by architect Schenkel Shultz and will be built by Pirtle Construction.

 “The FAU community is so proud of everything this building stands for,” said Dr. Joyanne Stephens, vice president of FAU’s Broward campuses. “Everything from our partnership with UF, to environmental sustainability, to the learning that will take place in its classrooms and the exciting scientific advances that will happen in its labs.”  

Speaking at the event along with Brogan and Stephens were Florida State Representative Ellyn Bogdanoff; Nancy Blosser, chair of FAU’s Board of Trustees; Dr. Joseph Joyce, UF senior executive associate vice president for agriculture and natural resources; and Craig van der Heiden, a FAU doctoral student. The ceremony included a traditional groundbreaking and raising of the FAU flag at the building site.

For more information, contact Maggie Gunther at 954-762-5275 or

- FAU-

Florida Atlantic University opened its doors in 1964 as the fifth public university in Florida. Today, the University serv es more than 26,000 undergraduate and graduate students on seven campuses strategically located along 150 miles of Florida's southeastern coastline. Building on its rich tradition as a teaching university, with a world-class faculty, FAU hosts nine colleges:  the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts & Letters, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Biomedical Science, the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science, the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing, the Harriet L. Wilkes Honors College, and the Colleges of Business, Education, Engineering & Computer Science, and Architecture, Urban & Public Affairs.

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