The University of Southern Mississippi’s Century Park residential complex has gone gold.
Named in celebration of the university’s centennial, the 864-bed, living-learning community for freshmen, honors college students and scholarship recipients is now Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certified.
LEED certification was established by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and is verified by the Green Building Certification Institute (GBIC). LEED is the nation’s preeminent program for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings.
“The Gold LEED status is a remarkable achievement for the university and all those involved in the planning, construction and opening of Century Park,” said Dr. Scott Blackwell, director of residence life at Southern Miss.
“Many people worked hard to see this project become reality, and the result is an attractive, state-of-the-art residence hall with systems in place that respect the environment.”
By using less energy, LEED-certified buildings save money for families, businesses and taxpayers, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the broader community. The designation is also in keeping with with one of the university’s four strategic priorities - healthy minds, bodies and campuses.
The $37.7 million development, which opened in the fall of 2010, is the largest in the history of the university. It consists of four, four-story buildings in a gated community located on West Fourth Street adjacent to the Longleaf Trace Gateway at Southern Miss.
Each double occupancy room in Century Park includes two single bunkable beds; two desks with chairs; two chests of drawers; a bookcase; two closets; mini blinds and a micro fridge; a sink and vanity area along with a private bathroom. Other features include identification card accessibility; covered bike racks; free cable; a closet on each floor to deposit recyclable material; and internet connection capabilities of up to one GB.
Ashley Brown, a Southern Miss senior from Byram, Miss., is a resident assistant at Century Park, Building One. In keeping with the design goals for Century Park, Brown helps her fellow residents live greener by assisting with many sustainable living programming sessions throughout the semester.
“We have the weekly Recyclathon in which each building within the Century Park complex competes to see who collects the most recyclables,” she said. “There are incentives for the winning building, such as ice cream socials and pizza parties. It’s a lot of fun.”
For more information about Century Park, contact the Department of Residence Life at 601.266.4783 or firstname.lastname@example.org.