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The Yellowjacket Union at the University of Wisconsin-Superior is located at 1605 Catlin Avenue, Superior, WI 54880; 715.394.8244. Visit their website here. Read the following articles: The UW-Superior Alumni News August 4, 2010 “Yellowjacket Union’s ‘green roof’ a healthy red and green a year after installation”, where you can also see a and slide show; their Winter 2010 newsletter; and the Gitche Gumee Gamut’s August 5, 2010 Green roof at UWS growing strong press release.

The University of Wisconsin-Superior’s Yellowjacket Union is a vibrant, energetic place where friends meet at UW-Superior to learn, eat, relax and play. The building?s name combines the UW-Superior Yellowjacket athletic team name and the historic concept of the student union. It engages the campus community by providing facilities, services, programs and involvement opportunities that promote student development, reinforce educational goals and foster inclusiveness.

The Yellowjacket Union construction project was a pilot site for Wisconsin?s program to reduce construction debris going into landfills. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources estimates that recycling during construction diverted 1,339 tons of construction and demolition debris from landfills to recycling centers ? a recycling rate of 95.75 percent.

“The Yellowjacket Union features an exciting, modern design that will aid in recruiting new students and make it more appealing and useful to current students. It also will feature greater energy efficiency, more efficient use of space and be easier to navigate. Its environmentally friendly “green roof” will be covered with plants that absorb heat and rainwater, with excess rainwater directed into a special garden to avoid contributing to storm runoff,” (UWSuperior website, see below).

“A key part of the Yellowjacket Union is environmental sustainability. It?s designed to make maximum use of natural light. Mechanical systems use significantly less energy and water than older buildings, and a sloping ?green roof? is covered with a mat of vegetation that absorbs rainwater to reduce the building?s impact on neighborhood storm runoff. The building is expected to receive LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Silver Certification, highlighting the university?s commitment to environmental sustainability and energy-efficient operations,” (UW-Superior Alumni News Winter 2010).

The $22 million, 90,000 sf Yellowjacket Union at the University of Wisconsin-Superior had its groundbreaking in April 2008 and replaces the aging Rothwell Student Center, which will be dismantled and its materials recycled during the first months of 2011. The Yellowjacket Union greenroof was completed on August 21, 2009 and the Yellowjacket Union opened on Jan. 19, 2010. It was paid for by student fees and gifts to the university.

The Yellowjacket Union will serve as the center of student life on campus, with dining facilities, bookstore, offices for student services, lounge and study areas, and meeting rooms. A wall of glass facing south, a soaring atrium with wood ceiling, meeting rooms with balconies overlooking the main floor, fireplaces, lounges, and open, fun dining areas will make the Yellowjacket Union an inviting place for students to gather. On the roof above, 186 cubic yards of lightweight soil mixture and 17,000 sf of sedums planted in a Sempergreen pre-vegetated mat system create the building?s environmentally friendly greenroof, among the first such buildings in the region.


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