Campus News

Kapoor Hall is UB's latest LEED-certified building

Kapoor Hall exterior.
Editor’s note

The university released a statement on May 2, 2019, regarding John Kapoor’s conviction in federal court.


Published April 9, 2015

“Our vision is to be a leader in education, research, wellness, clinical practice and service — a commitment which extends to promoting the health and sustainability of our environment as well.”
James M. O’Donnell, professor and dean
School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences

John and Editha Kapoor Hall, the home of the UB School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences, has been certified gold under the U.S. Green Building Council's Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system, a green building certification program that recognizes best-in-class building strategies and practices.

Kapoor Hall is UB’s ninth LEED-certified facility. Its green design exemplifies the university’s commitment to reducing its environmental footprint across all three campuses.

The pharmacy school officially opened its new home, named for alumnus John N. Kapoor and his late wife, Editha, on the South Campus in 2012 following a renovation.

The building includes many green design features. It provides plenty of natural daylight (75 percent of all space in the building receives natural light), reduces water use through features such as low-flow faucets, and lowers energy costs by more than 30 percent compared with a standard building of the same size that doesn’t implement eco-friendly design.

“This remarkable building is emblematic of our commitment to our pharmaceutical sciences and pharmacy students who will become leaders in their fields,” said James M. O’Donnell, professor and dean of the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. “Our vision is to be a leader in education, research, wellness, clinical practice and service — a commitment which extends to promoting the health and sustainability of our environment as well.

“We are proud that John and Editha Kapoor Hall has earned this distinction for green building leadership. It is a world-class facility, providing us with an opportunity to have an even greater impact on improving the health of our students and faculty as well as our community.”

UB Pharmacy’s move to the South Campus — after spending 35 years in Cooke and Hochstetter halls on the North Campus — brought the school’s students, faculty, administrative offices and support staff together under one roof.   

The building houses a state-of-the-art Pharmaceutical Care and Teaching Center and has improved linkages between all of UB's health science schools and the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences.

A $64 million renovation of the former Acheson Hall chemistry building, Kapoor Hall is located next to Parker Hall along Winspear Avenue. The 147,000-square-foot structure was designed by S/L/A/M Collaborative of Boston, Massachusetts.

Among key design points cited by the U.S. Green Building Council as enhancing the building’s sustainability:

  • About 25 percent of the construction materials were both extracted and manufactured within 500 miles of the project site.
  • About 21 percent of the building utilizes recycled materials.
  • The project uses water-efficient landscaping.
  • Renewable energy is generated on campus.
  • An Innovation in Design point was awarded for developing a transportation management plan. Transit options on campus include bikesharing, shuttles and carpooling.

Rebecca Brierley, UB Pharmacy’s assistant dean for external affairs, said that building social spaces and creating a sense of inclusion among pharmacy school students, faculty and staff was a key goal of Kapoor Hall’s design.

“It was important that the building achieve a feeling of unity among everyone in the School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences. The atrium of Kapoor Hall, a light filled, multi-use space, has been used as a meeting area by members of the UB community from both the North and the South Campuses. It was essential that Kapoor Hall, as a LEED-designed building, achieve a sense of community: Where shared space helps create a smaller environmental footprint.

“Kapoor Hall is also enormously beneficial to the program from the perspective that the pharmacy school is in one cohesive state-of-the-art building, something that is crucial to our faculty, students and potential students.”

Other facilities at UB with LEED certification include:

  • Barbara and Jack Davis Hall
  • Clinical and Translational Research Center
  • Creekside Village Community Center
  • Crossroads Culinary Center
  • Educational Opportunity Center
  • Ketter Addition
  • UB’s New York State Center of Excellence in Bioinformatics and Life Sciences
  • William R. Greiner Hall

UB Chief Sustainability Officer Ryan Mcpherson said planning and developing LEED-designed buildings sets an excellent example for UB students, faculty, staff and the community by pioneering changes on campus that reduce UB’s environmental footprint on the future.

“UB is a leader in sustainability in higher education,” he said. “We focus on teaching sustainability, bringing our faculty and students together to learn about local and global challenges.

“Our core values have been gaining momentum for the last 30 years. We are a public research institution, focusing on finding solutions to global challenges through education, research, setting the bar high for sustainability in our own operations and sharing our experiences, and partnering with the external community.”

Great renovation of the old chemistry building, but making a closer link to the medical school will be short-lived when the medical school is moved to the new building downtown.


Pepy Ettinger