Facciata Ca' Foscari vista Canal Grande 2
Facciata Ca’ Foscari vista Canal Grande 2

The Venetian Gothic palace overlooking the Grand Canal received the prestigious certification from the U.S. Green Building Council

Ca’ Foscari, Venice University’s headquarter, is the oldest LEED-certified building on the planet. The Venetian Gothic palace, built in 1453 on the Grand Canal, exceeded two American buildings, Fay House at Harvard and the U.S. Treasury Building, both erected in the 19th century. LEED is the protocol developed by the U.S. Green Building Council and dedicated to the buildings for the certification of their sustainability degree.

Water efficiency, renewable energy supplies, green purchasing, and sustainable mobility Ca’ Foscari, Venice University are the main categories taken into consideration by the Green Building Council and the areas where Ca’Foscari attained all the necessary prerequisites for the certification. The exemplary management of the facilities and the sustainable politics of the university have thus allowed them to attain this ambitious result.

The system is based on the attribution of “credits” for each requirement and GBC ITALIA – Green Building Council Italia – is the body designated to introduce the LEED standards in Italy. From the partnership with Habitech, consultant for the sustainable requalification of existing buildings, and Coster, a company operating in the field of energy control, was born a real case study on Ca’ Foscari, which summarise the potential of LEED certification for universities and historic buildings. The certification LEED is one of the commitments established by Ca’ Foscari in the Charter of Sustainability commitments for the year 2013.

Carlo Carraro, President of Ca’ Foscari University of Venice: «I am extremely satisfied  with this objective which certifies a consolidation of choices and sustainable politics conducted by Ca’ Foscari in multiple areas with the support of its bodies through the Charter of Sustainability Commitments and the sustainability reports published every year – Carraro affirmed – the conferment of the LEED certification upon a building that has centuries of history as well as structural characteristics that are so different from  modern constructions is a recognition of the commitment and the tangible effort made by the university for the well-being of the students and personnel and of our respect for the environment surrounding us.  We are also working in a similar manner on our other buildings. Our aspiration is for other Italian universities to take up this challenge».

Thomas Miorin, managing director of Habitech and leading Italian authority on building sustainability: «The LEED certification of Ca’ Foscari demonstrates the possibility of regeneration and especially of sustainable management of Italy’s historical heritage. This is an opportunity for universities, museums, ecclesiastical and public administration buildings to help the environment and public funds by redirecting finances towards other priorities. Today these are the actions that must be taken and prioritized because if they are done with intelligence, as in this case, there are either minimal or no costs and immediate return on the investment».

Today represents the attainment of an important goal for Coster which marks the culmination of a challenge undertaken two years ago in collaboration with Ca’ Foscari University of Venice,”Massimiliano Magri, shareholder and board member of the Coster group, said. “The success of the project in this historical and prestigious location encourages us to persevere on the path of sustainability and repeat this experience with other buildings around the country thanks to the specialization of our systems which are able to contribute substantially to energy savings.”

Photo: Ca’ Foscari, Venice University

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