Sarasota's Ringling College Of Art And Design Earns 2 LEED Golds

Two buildings at Sarasota's Ringling College of Art and Design have been awarded LEED gold certification.

The college's Academic Center and North Hall Student Housing building, designed by architect Donald Lawson of The Lawson Group and built by Willis A. Smith Construction, opened in the fall of 2009 and embody a core mission of the college's leadership.

"We felt it important to demonstrate our commitment to the environment by 'walking the talk' and letting our students experience the results of a well-designed, healthy living, learning and working environment," says Larry Thompson, president of Ringling College. "In the end it is all about design and by exposing them to this state-of-the-art facility we hope that they as leaders in the art and design field will influence decisions that will benefit our environment."

The 82,000-square-foot Academic Center is five stories and features a 200-seat auditorium, three galleries, two classrooms, a design center and a café lounge area. The second floor comprises six classrooms flexibly designed to also serve as an auditorium. The third and fourth floors are configured with as-needed spaces. The fifth floor contains eight studios.

The 75,000-square-foot, five-story North Residence Hall features offices, classrooms, a mail room, recreational room, and a student project room on its first floor, with dorm rooms, student project rooms, study rooms, and laundry rooms on its remaining floors. The second floor hosts a warming kitchen.

Donald Lawson of The Lawson Group states that, "Few institutional buildings in North America have achieved Gold Certification, and this recognition for both new buildings at Ringling firmly positions the college at the forefront of green building design. It recognizes these two new facilities as learning laboratories for educating Ringling students and the Sarasota community in the principles of green design and provides a living example for other organizations to follow."

Writer: Missy Kavanaugh
Sources: Dr. Larry Thompson, Ringling College of Art & Design; Donald Lawson, The Lawson Group
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