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The Natalie L. Haslam Music Center is officially one of UT’s greenest buildings.

The building recently became LEED certified—at the silver level—by the U.S. Green Building Council and verified by the Green Building Certification Building Institute. LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) is the nation’s preeminent program for design, construction, and operation of high-performance buildings.

“In addition to its original intention of being a state-of-the-art facility in which to study and perform music, the Natalie L. Haslam Music Center was also designed with this LEED Silver designation in mind,” said Jeff Pappas, director of the UT School of Music. “Many hours of careful planning went into seeking this designation, and we are thrilled that this wonderful building has reached this important designation.”

There are four levels of LEED certification: certified, silver, gold, and platinum. A building’s level of certification is based on a point scale that grades various aspects of a building project, including sustainability of the building site, water efficiency, energy use, materials and resources, and innovation and design.

The Haslam Music Center, which opened in 2013, is energy efficient and is designed to reduce energy consumption. Colored portions of the glass, while part of the aesthetic design of the exterior, are also coated with a ceramic pattern that reduces solar heat gain. The building conserves water by collecting and storing rainwater in underground cisterns used to irrigate the site’s plants and lawns.

The four-floor, 123,000-square-foot facility houses eight technology-enhanced classrooms; fifty-six practice rooms; fifty-seven performance studios/academic offices; an organ studio; the 412-seat Sandra G. Powell Recital Hall; the George F. DeVine Music Library; a recording/mixing lab; computer, electronic music, and piano labs; and an academic tutoring center.

The music center joins Ayres Hall in achieving the LEED Silver rating.

UT’s master plan incorporates sustainable design and building into new and renovated buildings and focuses on adding more open green space and walkways to make the campus more pedestrian- and bicycle-friendly.

UT adopted a sustainable building policy in 2007 to make green building the standard for new construction and renovation projects exceeding $5 million.

All of UT’s buildings are now required to meet the Tennessee Sustainable Design Guidelines. Meeting these standards is equivalent to obtaining LEED certification. Recent examples include the Min H. Kao Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Building, the Student Health Building, and the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy.


Lola Alapo (865-974-3993,