Gallery: ASU’s Global Institute of Sustainability Revitalizes Old Build...


Old bequeaths new in the form of Arizona State University’s Global Institute of Sustainability, situated in the campus’ beautifully renovated former Nursing Building. Conceived by Lord, Aeck & Sargent along with Gould Evans Associates, the $6 million renovation included asbestos abatement and standard modernization for classroom use along with a bundle of environmentally and sustainable enhancements. Their innovation turned a once dreary, old and dark building into a new institute filled with enough daylight to inspire its new inhabitants as they look for ways to improve the environment, the economy, and the social challenges we all face today.

One of the most obvious sustainable additions to the building is its six wind turbines that are mounted along the eastern edge of the roof. Each of the turbines is powered by thermal updrafts (it is located in Arizona after all) and provides 1,000 watts of power directly into the Arizona Public Service Grid. More energy generating capabilities will be added next year with the installation of a 24-killowatt photovoltaic solar array. Other sustainable additions include the generous use of recycled content throughout the building in the form of insulation, countertops, and even furniture along with the light sensors, an automated landscape irrigation system, and pervious paving to control storm water runoff.

With energy savings of more than 18% and more than a 50% reduction in water use, the building has its site set on attaining LEED Silver upon completion. Being the first institute of its kind to offer transdiciplinary degree programs geared at finding solutions to environmental, economic, and social challenges, the new home for Global Institute of Sustainability is making its mark and proving that re-invigorating something old can be just as good as building something new.

+ ASU Global Institute of Sustainability

+ Gould Evans Associates

+ Lord, Aeck, & Sargent

All Photos © 2008 Mark Boisclair


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  1. iChamp24 March 15, 2010 at 4:13 pm

    Hi, my name is Luke Stewart and I am a student at the University of Colorado at Boulder with a big interest in environmental sustainability. I absolutely love what has been done to this building. It is amazing all the things that you were able to change to help the environment with this building. The company that I am interning for is all about sustainability and we are working on this same idea with companies in order to reduce their carbon footprint through energy, waste and recycling. Check us out on our website at and keep working toward sustainability. What you have done is just fantastic work, I love the idea of wind turbines. If you have any questions about what we are doing for environmental sustainability at Greenworks2020 email me at

  2. greenbrad January 14, 2009 at 4:15 pm

    I just requested some information from the University. The staff there are incredibly quick, and very friendly.

  3. sheilabocchine January 14, 2009 at 3:13 pm

    I live in Phoenix and have been here. It’s a pretty amazing building and program!

  4. jrcrawf1 January 12, 2009 at 11:59 pm

    Woooo! I just started school there in the fall in the Sustainability major. Every time I have to talk to my counselor I almost hope I have to wait so I can diddle around with the interactive readouts for power and water consumption. Go Sundevils!

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