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Thomas Jefferson School of Law receives LEED Gold

The new Thomas Jefferson School of Law in the East Village has received LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council, Dean and President Rudy Hasl announced Tuesday.

The law school, which opened in January 2011, is eight stories high, totaling 380,000 square feet with three levels of underground parking.

There is a 49 kilowatt photovoltaic energy system on the main roof, owned and operated by San Diego Gas & Electric that generates clean electricity to be fed directly back into the grid and enough clean energy at peak production to power up to 32 homes, according to the school.

This renewable system alone was worth one full point toward the 39 points needed to qualify for Gold Level LEED certification.

The school’s new server and network infrastructures are also saving energy. A “Cool Roof” membrane on the main roof reflects heat from the sun and reduces cooling loads on the building.

Another innovation that helped the school receive LEED Gold certification is the use of a concrete admixture that turns regular concrete into a waterproof barrier, called Hycrete. It was used for the foundation and flooring.

The building’s design also conserves an estimated 20 percent less water than average, while the landscape design saves about 50 percent of normal water.

In addition, an 85-foot green wall on the fifth floor terrace has succulent plants that hide the view of the mechanical equipment on the roof of the building next door.

Thomas Jefferson School of Law. Courtesy of CoStar

Other green features that gave the building LEED Gold status included the availability of public transportation, with the trolley right on the school’s doorstep, and the use of low-emitting construction materials for the interior and innovation in the design process.

“From the beginning of the construction process, the school sought to achieve LEED Gold status as a statement of its commitment to sustainability and environmental responsibility,” said Hasl. “Our achievement of this status stands as a symbol of our commitment to responsible energy management and our leadership within the legal education community. We have demonstrated with our investment in this project that we have backed up our rhetoric with tangible commitments.”

In recognition of these green efforts, SDG&E presented the law school with an incentive check for $111,199 in March 2011 for its participation in the company’s Sustainable Communities Champions Award and Savings by Design programs.

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Thomas Jefferson School of Law

Company Website

1155 Island Ave.
San Diego, CA 92101

Thomas Jefferson School of Law Executive(s):

Rudy Hasl

  • President, Dean

William Byrnes

  • Associate Dean of Distance Learning

Beth Kransberger

  • Assoc. Dean, Student Affairs

Lori Wulfemeyer

  • Assistant Dean for Administrative

Luz Herrera

  • Assoc. Professor

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