Wednesday, September 2, 2009
There will be a ribbon-cutting ceremony to officially open the doors of Rider’s new and much-anticipated West Village Residential Halls on Thursday, September 10, at 11:30 a.m. The University’s first buildings constructed to the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Silver standard.
“New facilities continue to be a top priority at Rider and are evidence of our continuing commitment to one of the most important facets of our Strategic Plan: our student centeredness,” Rider President Mordechai Rozanski said. “Our students want to live on campus and we want to make our best efforts to accommodate them.”
The project was designed by Spiezle Architectural Group, Inc., an award-winning, full-service architecture, planning, and design firm from Trenton. West Village will add some 152-beds in a 2 building complex that will encompass 48,000 square feet of suite and apartment style living for upperclassman students. Their design will include loft-style living areas, a number of apartments with kitchens and washers and dryers in all units.
“We’re all familiar with the phrase ‘form follows function’ and I feel that the function of these new residence halls was central in the planning and development of the spaces,” said Cindy Threatt, director of Residence Life. “The new halls provide more autonomous living options for upper-class students while continuing to offer the close community and connectedness to which Rider students have become accustomed.”
Rider actually earned LEED points toward its Silver certification beginning with the earliest days of the construction project by using two massive Belgian draft horses to clear the land. The horses, supplied by CitiLog, an environmentally friendly logging company based in Pittstown, N.J., hauled the trees felled on the West Village site. This green method eliminated the need for mechanized vehicles and actually cost less to use, as well. The trees removed to clear the land were then used to make benches, raised garden beds and other furniture.
Since then, a number of innovative measures have been taken to make the construction of the two residence halls environmentally sustainable and “green.”
- Appliances in the West Village Residential Halls – heaters, air conditioners, refrigerators, washers and dryers – are EnergyStar certified and use less energy more efficiently
- The buildings are superinsulated to perform 17 percent better than base code requirements, and the slabs are made with concrete that includes recycled fly ash, one of the residues generated in the combustion of coal
- Thirty-five percent of all energy used is generated via renewable methods, such as wind power and hydropower, to reduce Rider’s carbon footprint
- The low-flow fixtures, storm-water management and native plantings reduce water use
- Paints and carpets were selected that do no emit harmful gases and odors
- Cork flooring is used in West Village kitchens
- Ninety percent of all spaces have views to the outdoors and are naturally illuminated
- More than 20 percent of construction materials were obtained locally and at least 75 percent of construction waste was recycled
- Light pollution has been reduced by improved efficiency and directing of lights toward the building
- Covered bicycle racks are present to encourage low-emission modes of transportation