The University of Oregon’s 400,000-square-foot Matthew Knight Arena is home to a variety of award-winning athletic programs. However, recently, it has received recognition for a much different feat: becoming the Eugene-located UO’s first LEED gold certified building.

“Matthew Knight Arena is a building that was designed with the certification in mind, and it was important to everyone” said Mike Duncan, the senior associate for athletic department operations and events. “Their goal was to bring a lot of notary to the building for the university and the town of Eugene.”

LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design and awards buildings on their environmentally-friendly construction and operations. The LEED award was granted by the U.S. Green Buildings Council and verified by the Green Building Certification Institute. Both organizations certify programs related to green buildings and award buildings for their superior awareness of the environment.

“Winning the LEED Gold certification is fantastic evidence of the University of Oregon’s commitment to sustainability,” said Steve Mital, the UO’s sustainability director. ” We now have a new policy on file that all new constructions will be built to be Gold certified or better.”

Many buildings at the UO have been awarded LEED Silver certification, such as the Lillis Business Complex and the Ford Alumni Center. However, Matthew Knight Arena is the first UO building to be awarded Gold certification, joining the White Stag Block located at UO Portland. Matthew Knight Arena was awarded Gold certification for their superior efficiency in both electrical and water efficiency, as well as their use of recycled and regional materials.

With this most recent award among the UO’s long list of sustainability accolades, the state of Oregon’s flagship university takes yet another step toward becoming the nation’s foremost environmentally-friendly campus.