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UCR Conserves Energy as You Invest it in Your Health at SRC Expansion

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UCR Conserves Energy as You Invest it in Your Health at SRC Expansion

By Sustainability Interns | May 29, 2015

You’re running on that treadmill – pushing yourself to become healthier. You’re sweating in that air-conditioned room as you lift the weights that help you tone your muscles. You feel the burn while you use the exercise machines. While you’re flexing in front of that mirror in the Student Recreation Center (SRC), UCR is saving 5.2 billion BTUs in energy (or $56,000) annually. What? That’s right! But that’s not all – it’s being more sustainable in general. Let’s think about it…

How do you get to the SRC? Do you walk since it is conveniently close to the class you’re coming out of? Do you bike there since there is enough bike storage space for you and your spotter? Did you take the bus from home and arrive at stops that are a quarter mile away from the gym? That’s right, the SRC has made alternative transportation very convenient and available – helping you save more money on gas when you’re trying to get a good workout.

You may or may not have noticed that the SRC is in the middle of a huge patch of open space. Actually, there is three times more open space than there is gym – providing habitat for vegetation and wildlife. That’s right, that part of the gym is for the bunnies that enviously look at us cool ourselves off in the pool during a hot Riverside day. Enjoy the pool because the SRC also saves 2.1 million gallons per year due to their water efficient technologies.

You might think this is cool, because it is, or you might find a way to find a fault since you’re 20 and you like to complain. Well stop right there.

The gym was not built on time. The school made a promise it just couldn’t keep. We all patiently waited and became disappointed, then a little annoyed. We all felt that way, including me, it’s true – but we should forgive and forget. Here’s why:
• SRC diverted 99% of its construction waste from landfills. They saved 17.7 million pounds of metal, wood, and concrete from being tossed into the ground as “trash”, and instead made sure it went to a materials refuse facility for processing. This was a great way for Riverside to show its dedication to sustainability and global responsibility.
• UCR used materials that were either pre-consumer or post-consumer recyclable to build SRC.
• 73% of the wood used was certified by the Forest Stewardship Council. What does that mean? The wood used promotes sustainable timber harvesting, preserves wildlife habitat and biodiversity, maintains soil and water quality, minimizes the use of harmful chemicals, and conserves forests of high conservation value.

Yes, they were a little late – but they were making a difference. It’s almost like when Peter Parker is late delivering pizzas because he was busy being Spiderman and saving people during the delivery.
So next time you’re on that treadmill, remember to think – this building is awesome. Not only do we have state-of-the-art equipment, an indoor track, indoor rock-climbing, and brand new tennis courts – but we also got these in a way that is representative of our values, through a LEED Certification (currently under review – let’s keep our fingers crossed for excellent results).  UCR is making a sustainable difference one Scottish bear paw at a time.


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General Campus Information

University of California, Riverside
900 University Ave.
Riverside, CA 92521
Tel: (951) 827-1012

Department Information

Office of Sustainability
University Village
1223 University Avenue, Suite 200

Tel: (951) 827-1270
Fax: (951) 827-3890
E-mail: sustain@ucr.edu

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