Sustainability-LEED Buildings


Western State Colorado University has several LEED certified buildings.

Western State Colorado University participates in the state's High Performance Building Program. The university is committed to have all new buildings and renovations earn LEED-Gold certification or its equivalent. LEED, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, is an internationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation of “high performance, green buildings” set by the U.S. Green Building Council.

What is LEED?

LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. According to the U.S Green Building Council, it is the nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction and operation, “high performance, green buildings.” The building will feature ample natural light, a sophisticated system to ensure proper indoor temperature throughout the year and even carbon dioxide sensors that trigger added fresh air flow when there are students in the class room.Of special interest is the fact that thousands of recycled red roofing tiles adorn the building’s roof. They were removed from a previously remodeled building and saved. Western takes pride in meeting LEED requirements for our recent construction and renovation projects. Read more about some of the sustainability features of Western State Colorado University's "green" buildings.

Feel free to check out the U.S. Green Building Council's website and explore to learn more about how our buildings are assessed and what it takes to create our green buildings! Click the button below!

LEED Ratings

Western's LEED Certified Buildings

University Center

  • LEED Gold University Center
  • The University Center, which opened in Jan. 2010, showcases numerous sustainability features and practices. Among those features are large, south-facing windows that provide abundant natural lighting, 10 recycling centers throughout the building, xeriscaping (which conserves water) and low-flow faucets. On-site recycling during construction diverted 60 percent of the waste from the landfill and regional materials were used in the construction of the building. The pulper composter in the café will provide material for the college’s community garden.


Borick Business Building

  • LEED Silver Borick Hall
  • The Borick Business Building, which opened its doors in fall 2007, led the way as the model for environmentally sustainable building initiatives at Western State Colorado University. The facility, which houses the Business, Accounting and Economics Department, has the distinction of being the first LEED-certified building on campus and within the Gunnison Valley. Environmental features include the re-use of roof tiles on the building taken from the renovation of other buildings on campus, motion lighting, and an energy-efficient ventilation system.

Kelley Hall

  • LEED Gold Kelley Hall
  • Originally built in 1957, Kelley Hall reopened its doors in fall 2008 after undergoing a $5.5 million renovation. It is the home of the the Behavioral and Social Sciences Department and the Center for Environmental Studies. Kelley Hall is more than just a building — it’s part of the curriculum. Students researched and selected environmentally sustainable materials and design elements. Among those features are insulated windows, motion lighting, compact florescent lighting, low-flow faucets and a highly efficient boiler system. Building materials — from flooring to furniture to insulation — are from recycled or renewable resources, such as cork, bamboo, wood and paper fiber and reclaimed hardwood. Environmental studies students also spruced up Kelley Hall’s exterior by planting a xeriscape garden and other landscaping with low-water, native plants. Student efforts also resulted in the campus’ first solar panels for solar electricity and thermal systems. An environmental studies class applied for grants and helped design the solar panel system, including an educational center and laboratory to provide renewable energy data to the larger community.
  • Take a virtual tour of Kelley Hall

Taylor Hall

  • LEED Gold Taylor Hall
  • The University Center opened in January 2010. It is Gold LEED. Taylor Hall features two of the original teaching facilities in Gunnison, the original high school and only building of the college. Taylor Hall is the marriage of both buildings in a very updated design. Features that add to LEED are the recycled fabric used on the furniture, windows that open automatically to help circulate air in the building and the biowales that hold water runoff and reuse of the existing exterior brick walls inside the building. The building was donated by alumni. ​

The Fieldhouse & Recreation Center

  • LEED Gold The Fieldhouse
  • Scheduled to open in February 2014. The entire facility is 120,000 square feet, and has 201 foot trusses, comparable to a Boeing 777 wingspan. The field house features a 200M track, 3 multi-purpose courts, 3 volleyball courts, 3 basketball courts, batting and golf cages, new weight room and fitness center, 47ft rock climbing wall, foam pit with trampoline, hot tub, new High Altitude Performance (HAP) lab, and coaches offices overlooking track. ​There are also separate weight rooms for our Division-2 athletes and the students.

The Pinnacles

  • LEED Gold The Pinnacles
  • The Pinnacles were built in 2012 and received LEED Gold certification. Pinnacles is the newest residence hall on campus and features over 200 bedrooms, all appartment style, and come fully furnished with provided with a full-size bed, a desk, and a small bureau as well as their own closet in each room. Upperclassmen students can move into a 2, 3, or 4 bedroom apartment. Each comes will a generously-sized kitchen and common room, full-sized stove/oven and refrigerator, and large of cabinet and closet spaces. Two-and three-bedroom units have one bathroom, while the five person four-bedroom units have two bathrooms.The Pinnacles have computer labs (with printers), kitchens, game rooms, and a multi- purpose room. Pinnacles also features a unique student led green house, which includes a hydroponic system that cleans all excess water used allowing reuse of this water.