Economic, environmental and social benefits are exactly why East Stroudsburg University pursued LEED certification for the Monroe Hall renovation. Originally built as an all-boys residence in 1938, the historic building sat unoccupied for more than five years because the cost of repairs outweighed its practical use. The existing envelope was highly inefficient, the COST PER SQ FT$136.89FEATURED IN2014 Architectural Portfolio was outdated, the building was non-compliant for life safety and accessibility, and the space did not meet the needs of today's students.
Highland Associates transformed the decommissioned dormitory into the new home for ESU's speech-language pathology and communications studies departments - providing much needed clinical, classroom, and office space on campus.
Each component was chosen to improve energy efficiency, maintain the historic character, and utilize materials with maximum local, regional, recycled, and rapidly renewable content. Through careful planning, more than 96 percent of the original structure remains intact, reducing the need for new materials and resources and more than 120 tons of construction waste were either recycled or saved for reuse. The geothermal and HVAC system is capable of generating an energy savings of 52 percent over traditional building design.
The renovations to historic Monroe Hall posed many challenges that required creative solutions. The design team and university stakeholders worked closely together to seamlessly implement sustainable strategies while maximizing the university's return on investment. Monroe Hall was awarded Gold certification while coming in $1 million under budget.