Clark Nexsen

Clark Nexsen

Virginia Beach, VA


Virginia State University Building Earns LEED Gold Status

By Eliza Vaughn
Jan 20, '14 10:09 AM EST
Virginia State University Gateway II Residence Hall. © Richard Boyd.
Virginia State University Gateway II Residence Hall. © Richard Boyd.

January 20, 2014 (Petersburg, Virginia) – Virginia State University’s Gateway II Residence Hall, designed by Clark Nexsen, has earned the prestigious Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council. Gateway II, a 135,000-square-foot residence hall that opened in 2012, is the first VSU facility to earn LEED Gold certification for its comprehensive energy-efficient and environmentally friendly features.

LEED certification is an internationally recognized standard for sustainable design and construction. Buildings receive the distinction based on criteria in a variety of areas including sustainable site consideration, water efficiency, energy efficiency, material and resource selection, indoor air quality, and innovation in design.

The 586-bed residence hall serves returning and graduate students and includes a computer lab, multipurpose room, gameroom, wellness center, and laundry facilities. The four-story building was designed by Clark Nexsen. W.M. Jordan Company served as Construction Manager for VSU.

Sustainable features include:
•  Heating, air conditioning, lighting, and other systems designed to maximize energy performance, resulting in a 21 percent reduction of energy usage.
•  More than half of the site was preserved to provide green space with pedestrian walkways and expansive lawn areas that can be used by students.
•  More than 84 percent of the interior space has access to daylight and 95 percent of the interior space has a view to the outside.
•  Low-flow faucets, showerheads, and dual flush toilets will reduce the annual water usage by 50 percent.
•  More than 96 percent of the total waste generated during construction was diverted away from landfills, allowing for the recovery of recyclable and reusable materials.
•  Low VOC (volatile organic compounds) products were used throughout the building to protect indoor air quality and maintain a healthier dorm environment.
•  To help reduce the carbon footprint, more than 40 percent of the construction materials used in the facility were extracted and manufactured within 500 miles of the project.
•  The storm water management plan minimizes storm water run-off and reduces stream erosion; returning the site hydrology to its pre-construction condition.
•  Optimum insulation, energy efficient lighting, high performance window assemblies, energy recovery ventilator units, and lighting occupancy sensors help to conserve energy use.

In awarding Gateway II Residence Hall its LEED Gold certification, the U.S. Green Building Council gave the building special innovation credits for exemplary performance in maximized open space, daylighting and views, and water efficiency.

About Clark Nexsen
Clark Nexsen is an award-winning integrated design firm providing architecture, engineering, planning, and interior design services to a broad range of sectors. The firm is committed to providing design excellence to clients throughout the U.S. and overseas. In 2013, Architect magazine ranked Clark Nexsen 11th in the Top 50 firms in the nation and Building Design+Construction magazine ranked Clark Nexsen in the Engineering/Architect Giants Top 20. The firm is headquartered in Norfolk, Virginia, with 450+ employees in ten additional office locations in Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, Texas, and Washington, D.C. For more information on the firm, visit or find them on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.

For more information, contact Cat Brutvan at 919-576-2100 or

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