Sustainability at Fondren Library
Submission to the Friends of Fondren Library Undergraduate Research Awards, 2017. This paper was originally prepared for Course ARCH 313 (Fall 2016): Case Studies in Sustainable Design, given by Professor Rives Taylor, Department of Architecture.
The purpose of this project was to broadly evaluate the environmental performance of Fondren Library, its spaces, and its practices. For this particular case study, I focused on energy use, featuring lighting, air conditioning, and energy production and conservation tactics; water use, involving mostly bathrooms; daylight, views, ventilation, and air quality; and usage of materials. I used a variety of written and online sources to gather general data about libraries and sustainable methods and their feasibility. I also conducted my own small survey of the library’s areas and contacted people who could relay information about Fondren. This research gave way to the conclusion that Fondren Library has made reasonable advances in the area of sustainability, but there is plenty of room for improvement. Some potential improvements are futuristic and perhaps not yet well-developed, or require a large investment (that usually pays itself off soon after); others are very simple to implement and give almost immediate results.