Medical Science Research Building II
The Medical Science Research Building (MSRB) II was designed to use 26% less energy than the typical energy-intensive research laboratory and preserves the surrounding landscape.
Sustainable Site Features:
The building's location preserves a buffer of trees and minimizes the building's footprint. The roof and landscape elements were selected so as to reduce the heat island effect from exposure to the hot North Carolina sun.
Incorporating the natural forest rather than exotic landscaping in the buildings design enabled the designers to achieve landscape watering reductions of more than 50% compared with traditional landscapes decorated with non-native plants that would require regular irrigation.
Light-shelves and other elements shade the buildings windows, where heat would otherwise enter the building. Light-colored exterior materials and roofing, as well as treated windows were used to reduce heat absorption, while the angles of ceilings allow natural ambient light deeper into the building. Inside, a heat-recovery wheel helps to balance the temperature of air moving into the building by exposing it to the controlled air leaving the building, reducing the need for heating and air conditioning.
Indoor Air Quality
Low-VOC carpets, paints, tile, wood and sealants were used throughout the building to improve air quality and the health of occupants.
MSRB II was one of only a few LEED projects at Duke to divert more than 75% of construction waste from the landfill. The project made use of recycled steel, concrete and gypsum in addition to obtaining more than 20% of all materials locally.
Integration of Sustainability in Design & Construction Process
As a research and laboratory space, commissioning of fume hoods to ensure efficiency was a critical step. The building also uses Green Seal approved housekeeping chemicals and microfiber mops to maintain the exceptional indoor air quality.