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Binghamton University Unveils New Smart Energy Building

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Binghamton University President Harvey Stenger and other local officials held a grand opening ceremony on Thursday morning for the University's new Smart Energy building.

"We had to design the building, decide what's going to be in the building, then the construction, so it's been a long process, but now that it's done, it doesn't seem that long because we're here and we have a beautiful building," said Harvey Stenger, Binghamton University President. 

Planning for the project began six years ago when BU applied and received Governor Cuomo's SUNY 2020 Legislation, which " incentivizes bottom-up, individualized, long-term economic development plans on SUNY campuses."

The 114,000 square foot project cost $70 million to construct and will accommodate research and development initiatives for the Chemistry and Physics departments and provide an opportunity for the two groups to work together.

"I've got two entire departments that have agreed that this is their major challenge for the next decade, you won't find that among most University campuses," said Stenger.

Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold Standards were followed throughout the construction. This particular LEED-certification is the second highest possible and is granted by United States Green Building Council, which works to make spaces better for the environment and healthier to work in.

The two-story project includes photovoltaic panels on the roof to produce electricity, hydronic radiant heating in the floor which is controlled by LED lighting, individual space monitoring to reduce air flows and energy use, and water-cooled equipment to conserve energy.

"There's a natural aspect to this building that tries to bring you inside and outside at the same time," said Stenger.

In lieu of a ribbon cutting ceremony, Stenger and Provost Don Nieman unveiled a plaque honoring Stanley Whittingham, a distinguished professor of chemistry and materials science at the University. It will be hung up in one of the main atrium as a reminder of his work to science and as an inspiration for others to follow.

The University says the investments made to build the Smart Energy Building had an economic impact of $90.7 million on the Broome/Tioga region, which supported 915 local jobs including 366 construction jobs during the design and building phase of the project.