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achieve a higher standard of thermal performance,” said Masuda.
The building also has a combination of low-energy, cost-efficient HVAC systems—
including active chilled beams, direct outdoor air units with heat recovery, underfloor
air distribution and air floor system. In fact, the building is targeted to reduce energy
use by 36 percent.
The dry desert climax of Phoenix inspired the building’s sustainable water management features, which include low water-consumptions fixtures.
On the exterior of the building, the landscaping in the plaza was strategically designed to provide shade while utilizing minimal water.
“In areas where irrigation is required
for plant establishment, such as the upper courtyard, drip irrigation has been
installed,” said Masuda.
According to Masuda, the landscape
design provides a 79 percent reduction in
potable water, following the LEED credit
A COLLABORATIVE SUCCESS
Since its opening, students, faculty and
the Phoenix community as a whole have
embraced the Beus Center. Additionally, the building has helped improve the
law school experience for students and
faculty alike—specifically in terms of increased collaboration.
In the former law school building on
the Tempe campus, students often complained about the difficulty of finding
faculty due to the building’s complicated
layout. However, a recent survey found
a 24 percent increase in individual students meeting with faculty, and a 55
percent increase for groups of students
meeting with faculty, since moving into
the Beus Center. The university credits
this improvement to the building’s centralized design, which naturally lends
itself to more opportunities for face time
between students and faculty. The same
survey also found a 32 percent increase in
faculty collaboration for scholarship activities, events, teaching, service projects,
programs and meetings.
“There is always a place in the building where people can convene and participate,” said Masuda. “It is always
packed with people. It really has become
a great communal space…almost like an