Edge Hill University's Centre of Excellence for Teaching and Learning, which opened in June 2008, incorporates many ecofriendly features and is at the forefront of a drive to reduce the university's carbon footprint.
Earlier this month, it won the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors' North West Award for Sustainability 2009.
The building accommodates faculty of health staff and students as well as the SOLSTICE Centre for e-learning. Operating theatres, clinical skills areas and robot-style mannequins that can simulate everything from pregnancy to a mild fever provide a setting for cutting-edge training for the 4,000 midwives, nurses and healthcare professionals who graduate each year.
The state-of-the-art facility incorporates a "live energy wall" in the main entrance. This changes colour with the level of energy usage, to remind staff and students to turn off computers, lights and other electrical equipment.
Renewable technologies are used throughout. Ground-source pumps provide heating and cooling from water extracted from aquifers 140m underground. Solar thermal collectors heat water to temperatures close to 80C. Taken together, it is estimated that these initiatives will reduce campus carbon emissions by at least 20 tonnes per year.
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