Minister of Environment unveils LEED Gold lab at KPU Langley

Mon, Feb 3, 2014

Langley, B.C. – Langley’s Institute for Sustainable Horticulture (ISH) lab at Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) has been awarded LEED Gold status, an internationally recognized achievement of excellent Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED).

The plaque – which joins the KPU Surrey library and KPU Tech LEED Gold certifications – was unveiled Friday by B.C. Minister of Environment Mary Polak.

“We are very proud of the team in facilities, along with their consultants, and the on-going dedication of our ISH scientists. This certification is well-deserved and fitting for this research building,” says KPU president and vice-chancellor Dr. Alan Davis.

The Canadian Green Building Council’s LEED rating system quantifies environmentally beneficial building attributes, reviewing a site’s water and energy efficiency, material selection, and innovation in design, among other topics.

"As part of its Climate Action Plan, B.C. has required all new provincially owned or leased government buildings to be built to a minimum of LEED Gold or equivalent standard since 2008. Congratulations to Kwantlen for achieving LEED Gold certification for the Institute for Sustainable Horticulture lab. It’s particularly challenging to obtain the standard on laboratory facilities, so this is quite an accomplishment for all involved,” says Polak.

While building KPU’s state-of-the-art lab, over 75 per cent of construction waste was diverted from landfills and landscape water usage was cut in half. For the first two years, the building was also designed to acquire 50 per cent of its energy from renewable sources.

“The achievement of LEED Gold for a small research lab was only possible through the design team’s expertise, persistence with exploring creative alternatives and commitment to creating a highly sustainable building,” says Karen Hearn, executive director of KPU’s facilities.

The Institute for Sustainable Horticulture works to advance sustainable horticulture development through collaborative research and innovation. ISH’s research includes eco-friendly pest management, food sovereignty through urban agriculture and energy-efficient greenhouse construction methods. Part of the lab’s new research facility includes Canada’s first microbial insect pathogens incubator, where the university’s bio-controls research group explores environmentally friendly pest management systems. More information on ISH can be found here.

Information on LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification is available here.

Kwantlen Polytechnic University has been serving the Metro Vancouver region for 30 years, and has opened doors to success for more than 250,000 people. Four campuses—Richmond, Surrey, Cloverdale and Langley—offer a comprehensive range of sought-after programs, including business, liberal arts, science, design, health, trades and technology, apprenticeships, horticulture, and academic and career advancement. Over 18,000 students annually have a choice from over 145 programs, including bachelor’s degrees, associate degrees, diplomas, certificates and citations. Learn more at


Caption: (From left) Karen Hearn, KPU executive director of facilities; Dr. Alan Davis, KPU president and vice-chancellor; Hon. Mary Polak, minister of environment; Russell Chernoff, Chernoff Thompson Architects.

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Hayley Woodin
Media Specialist
Tel: 604.599.2883

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