Panel discussion focuses on “Green Building”

Williamson Hall atrium

The atrium of Williamson Hall.

Youngstown State University hosts a panel discussion at noon, Tuesday, March 19, to celebrate the university’s Williamson Hall being awarded LEED Gold certification by the U.S. Green Building Council.

LEED is the nation’s preeminent program for the design, construction and operation of high performance green buildings.

To recognize the accomplishment, the YSU Williamson College of Business Administration will hold the panel discussion titled “Innovative Practices in Building and Furnishing a Green Building.”

The discussion in the auditorium of Williamson Hall features several individuals involved in the design, construction and furnishing of the building, including Dave Dimond of Perkins+Will Architects; Greg Strollo and Rod Lambertson of Strollo Architects; Robert Wilson and Heather Fesler of Ohio Desk; Tony Paluka of Steel Case; and Chris Morrone of CJL Engineering. Anthony Kos, Ph.D., WCBA assistant to the dean, will moderate the panel.

A reception will follow at 1 p.m. in the atrium to formally announce the LEED Gold certification and unveil a plaque commemorating the award.

The $34 million, 110,000-square-foot Williamson Hall, located on Phelps Street between Rayen Avenue and Wood Street on the south side of the YSU campus, opened in the summer of 2010. The three-story, state-of-the-art facility encompasses nearly a full city block and is the largest single capital expenditure in YSU’s history. Nearly half of the cost was covered by donations from more than 900 individuals, including lead gifts of $5 million from the family of the late Warren P. Williamson Jr. and $4 million from Tony and Mary Lariccia.

Williamson Hall achieved Gold LEED certification for energy use, lighting, water and material use as well as incorporating a variety of other sustainable strategies. By using less energy and water, LEED certified buildings save money, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and contribute to a healthier environment for residents, workers and the larger community.

“Building operations are nearly 40 percent of the solution to the global climate change challenge,” said Rick Fedrizzi, president, chief executive and founding chair of the U.S. Green Building Council. “While climate change is a global problem, innovative organizations like the Williamson College of Business Administration at Youngstown State University are addressing it through local solutions.”