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Sustainable Development at the University of Waterloo

Story by EcoSpark-

The University of Waterloo Health Sciences Campus and School of Pharmacy are built on land that was previously an industrial site (brownfield development), so it is an example of how an older area can be revitalised. 

The University of Waterloo’s Faculty of Environment, Environment 3 building has been rated as Platinum Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED); the highest level. The LEED program evaluates sustainable development, water efficiency, energy efficiency, materials selection, and indoor environmental quality. The Faculty of Environment building has a two-story plant-covered, living walls connected to the ventilation system and acts as a living air filter. It uses sustainable wood products such as bamboo, and 88% recycled steel. The building uses low-flow faucets and toilets that utilize rainwater collected from the roof and filtered through constructed wetlands. The placement of windows maximises daylight and sensors adjust the lighting provided. A honeycomb technique helps make the windows five times more insulated to increase energy efficiency. Solar panels on the roof provide energy to power the building. There is also a garden on the roof that helps students study ecology. The physical footprint was also created to be as small as possible.

To learn more about Sustainable Development at the University of Waterloo visit or