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Chesapeake Student Center receives LEED Gold certification

Tidewater Community College’s Chesapeake Campus Student Center has received LEED Gold certification, the second highest rating category for Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design, a green building certification program that recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices. LEED certified buildings save money and resources and have a positive impact on the health of occupants, while promoting renewable, clean energy.

Situated on a tidal wetland and a tributary of the Elizabeth River, the Chesapeake Campus is a Certified Audubon Sanctuary. VMDO Architects took into account the unique surroundings of the area when designing and constructing the student center, which opened in 2014.
“We are proud of the college’s commitment to protecting the environment with building projects like this one,” said Lisa Rhine, provost of the Chesapeake Campus. “Chesapeake is known for being the ‘green’ campus, because of its proximity to protected wetlands and the wildlife that live there.”
Emphasizing the unique context of the tidal wetland landscape, the student center’s design provides expansive exterior views, connecting students to surrounding natural areas.
A recipient of the “Maximize Open Space” and “Protect and Restore Habitat” credits under the LEED rating system, the student center features open areas preserved and enhanced with native landscaping, which provide a perfect habitat for birds, wildlife and nature-exploring students alike. Energy-efficient curtain walls and storefront glazing allow natural light to shine through the building.
The 60,000-square-foot building offers:

  • dining options
  • study areas
  • a fitness center
  • a full-court gymnasium
  • gaming rooms
  • a student leadership suite
  • a TCC Barnes & Noble bookstore distribution center
  • licensed child care in partnership with YWCA South Hampton Roads

Meeting spaces with state-of-the-art audio-visual equipment are available to community groups.