The Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex (ISEC), located on Columbus Avenue on the Boston Campus, was completed in 2017 achieving LEED Gold Certification.  The six-story building features an integrated and collaborative approach to sustainability.  From the programmatic organization of the building, to the design of the building enclosure, and through construction of the building, sustainability was a leading factor embedded in the project.  The 234,000 square foot cutting-edge facility defines a new academic and social hub for students, advancing the University’s research mission.



   Energy savings over
a typical lab building

Through the use of technologies such as chilled beams, heat recovery, solar wall, and a cascading air system, ISEC is able to achieve energy savings of 50% over a typical research lab building.  The cascade air system significantly reduces the outside air needed for the building, taking advantage of the large central atrium volume.
A combination of a rainwater harvesting system on the roof and a bioswales designed into the landscape, 69% of storm water is retained on site. The bioswale, next to the main entrance, collects storm water and allows for the slow infiltration of water into the surrounding landscape.  Rainwater harvested from the roof is collected and offsets about 57% of the flushing demand for the building.


  Storm water
   retained on site


  Peak solar heat
gain reduction 

Unique shading elements on the façade known as a “solar veil” and high-performance triple glazing significantly lower solar heat gain and allowed for the elimination of a perimeter heating system, helping lowering overall energy use. Atrium skylights are designed to maximize daylight and minimize interior glare. Automated systems such as daylighting controls and window shades provide occupant comfort.


click on the sustainability brochure to learn how sustainability is integrated within the
Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex


View the ISEC sustainability brochure 


2017 Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex (ISEC). Photos by Adam Glanzman/Matthew Modoono, Northeastern University