WKU parking structure first in Kentucky to receive Parksmart certification

Natasha Breu

WKU’s newest parking structure, Parking Structure Three, became the first in Kentucky and 26th in the world to receive Parksmart certification from Green Business Certification Inc.

The criteria for Parksmart certification is broken up into four categories: Management, programs, technology and structure design innovation. GBCI looks at how many building materials are recycled and reused, high efficient light bulb use, green certified materials, efforts supporting carpooling to reduce carbon emissions, and unique features. The structure must receive a certain amount of points in each category to qualify, Director of Parking and Transportation Services Jennifer Tougas said.

PS3 received the bronze Parksmart certification from efforts to design and construct a durable, sustainable structure Tougas said on WKU’s website. THP Limited of Cincinnati aided in the design process along with following the Parksmart certification process. The project cost $10 million funded through student fees and was finished in 2018. The structure holds 698 parking spaces.

A sign on the first floor of PS3 lists design features of the structure such as LED lighting, electric vehicle charging stations, an air pump station and a bicycle repair station, according to WKU’s website.

“It demonstrates our commitment to sustainable practices,” Tougas said.

Nearly 82 percent of construction waste was recycled and the project reconfigured the nearby campus transit hub to “improve pedestrian safety, bus circulation, and traffic flow,” according to WKU’s website.

Tougas said this parking structure has been important for WKU because it shows the community how to be stewards of the environment when thinking of providing sustainable energy.

News reporter Natasha Breu can be reached at 270-745-6011 and [email protected]. Follow Natasha on Twitter @nnbreu.