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We’re going to bury the lede by first explaining LEED certification. The acronym refers to the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program, a point system that scores new construction and remodeling projects on sustainability and environmental responsibility. The first LEED-certified building on campus was the UW Medical Foundation Centennial Building, which earned a gold LEED status (the second highest rating) in 2011. Some of the earth-friendly features that contributed to the certification are its daylight sensors, which reduced lighting energy use by 80 percent, and a green, vegetated rooftop, which decreases the site’s heat absorption. Two decades later, the UW has racked up over a dozen additional LEED certifications, including seven more gold-star buildings and the platinum-rated Education Building. LEED certification continues to be a priority for new construction on campus. The Computer, Data & Information Sciences Building, or Morgridge Hall, for example, aims to achieve platinum status when it’s completed in 2025.

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