U.S. Green Building Council New York Upstate Chapter

 educating, advocating, celebrating green building


FL/ST - Sustainable Speaker Series - Summer Picnic and Tour of Cornell Plantations Nevin Welcome Center

  • Wednesday, August 14, 2013
  • 2:30 PM - 5:00 PM
  • Ithaca - Cornell Plantations - Brian C. Nevin Welcome Center


Registration is closed

Please join us for our August presentation and Summer Picnic:

Finger Lakes/Southern Tier Region

Tour of the Cornell Plantations LEED Gold Certified Brian C. Nevin Welcome Center

Presented by: Sonja M. Skelly, Director of Education, Cornell Plantations

Wednesday, August 14, 2013
2:30 pm to 5:00 pm

Brian C. Nevin Welcome Center

Cornell Plantations
124 Comstock Knoll Drive 
Ithaca, NY

(Click Here for Directions and More Info)

Park in the Plantations parking lot in front of the Nevin Center; the parking lot is a Cornell metered "Pay and Display" lot.  Cost of parking is $0.75 for each 30 minutes of parking.  The meter accepts cash and credit.   


In addition to being the welcome center for visitors to the Cornell Plantations - Cornell University’s unique botanical garden, arboretum, and large, diverse network of natural preserves - the Brian C. Nevin Welcome Center also serves as a teaching tool for many groups interested in learning more about green buildings and native plants, and sustainable site and landscape design.
The Nevin Center was completed in November 2010 and awarded a LEED Gold certification in November 2012.  The facility incorporates many features that save energy and water and help improve the indoor environment, key features for this facility that serves as an educational center.
Sonja Skelly, the Director of Education for the Plantations, will share her experience of the LEED certification process and the collaborative, integrative process that was instrumental in helping the Plantations realize their vision.  We’ll tour the building and site to learn by seeing the sustainable features.  Please wear comfortable shoes for walking.

The presentation and tour will be preceded by a “Meet & Greet”, with food and refreshments provided courtesy of Collegetown Bagels and Ithaca Bakery.  It summer!  So we’re celebrating with a picnic!  The bioswale, filled with native plants, will be in full bloom.  And please come early or stay late if you wish so that you can experience some of the other wonderful natural and educational features the Plantations has to offer.

Learning Objectives:

  • Identify two unique environmental benefits of the Nevin Center’s bioswale.
  • Describe the project challenges and how the collaborative, integrative process and strategies contributed to the successful design and realization of the vision.
  • Explore the basics of natural ventilation, daylighting, and the energy management system and how they contribute to enhance the learning environment.
  • As part of a facility and site tour, become aware of how the sustainable design features were applied and how they contributed to achieving LEED certification in the key areas of water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources, indoor environmental quality, innovation in design, regional priority and locations and linkages.


This course has been approved for 1.5 AIA LU/HSW.



About the Presenter:

Sonja Skelly is the Cornell Plantations’ director of education, overseeing all education efforts, visitor services, and communications. She joined Plantations in 2002 and participated with the client/design team in imagining a new center at Plantations, conveying Plantations' needs along with the desire to have a LEED certified building, which evolved from a conservatory to a welcome center. Originally from Texas, Sonja earned her B.A. and M.S. from Texas A&M University; and a Ph.D. from the University of Florida.

$5 for Members; $10 for Non-members; Students free. $10 Price at the door. Register via the link to the left. You will need to log-in with your email address and create a profile if you have not already done so.  You must use the email address associated with your Chapter membership account in order to receive the member's rate for registration.

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