Santa Fe Community College’s new Automotive Technologies Center has received LEED Gold certification from the U.S. Green Building Council for the sustainability and energy-saving measures built into the structure.

The council rates buildings on 110 available credit points, with 60 points scoring a gold rating and 80 points the highest rating, platinum. The auto center, which opened for the spring semester, scored 66 points, the college reported.

“The Automotive Technologies Center at SFCC is one of only 103 newly constructed buildings in the U.S. to achieve LEED Gold Version 4 since 2013,” said Huang Bahn, director of design services at Verdacity, an Albuquerque LEED certification services company.

The design will enable the college to reduce energy consumption by 32 percent, indoor water use by 44 percent and outdoor water use by 92 percent. Also, 50 percent of construction waste was recycled, the college reported.

The $7 million Automotive Technologies Center was built from December 2019 to November 2020. The center has engine, electric and transmission labs.

“I’m proud of the fact that we were under budget,” said Karin Pitman, director project manager at SFCC.

Santa Fe Community College’s other LEED Gold buildings are the off-campus Higher Education Center and the Health and Sciences Building. The Trades and Technology Center was originally rated LEED Platinum, but Bahn believes it would be LEED Gold if rated today.

LEED is the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design program that recognizes sustainable building strategies and practices. LEED Gold recognizes maximizing energy efficiency and carbon emissions reductions.

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