Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

U of U Energy Upgrade in Health Professions Building Recognized by DOE

File: University of Utah

Thursday the University of Utah became the first organization in the state to be recognized by the Department of Energy’s Better Building Challenge.  A recently completed project cut energy consumption by more than 40 percent in the Dumke Health Professions Education Building. It houses the Departments of Physical Therapy, Occupational Therapy, Neurobiology and Anatomy with classrooms and labs. Myron Willson is the director of the Sustainability Resource Center at the U. He says the building’s usefulness far outweighed its crumbling heating and cooling system.

“So when the Better Buildings Challenge came on line and we were looking for a showcase building this seemed to be one because of the large savings that we were getting," says Willson, "in addition to the savings on maintenance calls and happier occupants. So it met all of the needs.”

Willson says the HVAC upgrades will save the university $57,000 a year with a return on investment in five to six years.  He says the university is on track to reach its 2020 goal to reduce energy consumption by 20 percent across a total of 13 million square feet of building space.

Bob Nelson is a graduate of the University of Utah with a BA in mass communications. He began his radio career at KUER in 1978 when it was still in Kingsbury Hall. That’s also where he met his wife, Maria Shilaos, in 1981. Bob left KUER for commercial radio where he worked for 25 years, and he is thrilled to be back at KUER. Bob and his family are part of an explorer group, fondly known as The Hordes and Masses, which has been seeking out ghost towns and little-known places in Utah for more than twenty years.
KUER is listener-supported public radio. Support this work by making a donation today.