Sustainable building practices at Marquette

Marquette is no stranger to "green" building practices.  The Department of Facilities Services has been utilizing sustainable and green building practices for years. (See Facilities Services Planning, Design and Construction for more information). Their efforts take the form of installing more efficient energy and water systems and fixtures to keep operating costs down.  They use locally sourced and more sustainable building materials in the cores and shells, while recycling the construction debris.  They want buildings to last 50 to 100 years rather than the industry standard of 20 years.  They know that the greenest buildings are the buildings already standing, and the ones that will last the longest. 

In an effort to recognize Marquette's, as well as our contractors’ work, several buildings on campus have gone for and achieved Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification.  LEED certification is often considered the preeminent sustainable building certification program in the world.  Marquette’s certified projects are listed below. 

In addition to LEED certification, there are many buildings on campus that have gone through “adaptive reuse.”  Adaptive reuse refers to the process of reusing an old site or building for a purpose other than which it was built or designed for (Wikipedia). This practice follows the idea that the greenest building is the building already standing.  Instead of tearing a building down and requiring new raw materials and energy to build a new one, that standing building is repurposed for a new function.  An example of this on campus would be when Straz Tower was converted from a YMCA into a residence hall and office space.  Several other examples can be found below.  

Another sustainable building practice is preservation and renovation.  Marquette’s Historic Core is home to several iconic campus buildings.  Buildings that we want to last for another 100 years.  As such, the Historic Core buildings of Sensenbrenner Hall, Marquette Hall and Johnston Hall are all being renovated in order to accommodate the needs of 21st century higher education. 

LEED certified buildings

Eckstein Hall

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Building Purpose:

Law School

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Engineering Hall

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Engineering School

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McCabe Hall

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Residence Hall

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Zilber Hall

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Administrative Building

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Total square footage of LEED certified projects on campus: 539,500


Adaptive Reuse

The following list features several buildings that have been repurposed over the years.

Building Square Footage Former Use Current Use
1700 Building 18,000 Medical clinic Academic building
500 North 25,000 Medical office Child Care Center
707 Building 49,200 Office building Flex office space
Abbottsford Hall 70,000 Apartment building Residence hall
Cramer Hall 110,000 School of Dentistry Clinical Research
Mashuda Hall 155,392 Hotel Residence hall
McCabe Hall 94,500 Apartment building Residence hall
N/S Dental Clinic 6,000 Office space Outreach dental clinic
Service Building 32,000 Warehouse Office building
Straz Tower 208,200 YMCA Residence hall and office space


Green building resources

Green Building (EPA)
Green Globes
Inhabitat blog
Living Building Challenge
Solar Decathlon
TED Talks – Sustainability by Design playlist
Urban Ecology Center
US Green Building Council
Wisconsin Green Building Alliance

If you would like us to add any additional information pertaining to green buildings and green building practices to this page, please don’t hesitate to send your requests to


Contact the Office of Sustainability

Is this site missing any information you would like to see? Is it missing your program or another program on campus that should be featured? Do you have suggestions for making Marquette a more sustainable university? If so, please contact us:

Phone: 414-288-1463