Green Campus Walking Tour

Experiential Learning through a Walking Tour

Did you know that you can do a free Sustainability Walking Tour right here on the UC Berkeley campus?

UC Berkeley is a leader in sustainability and is a responsible steward of the campus environment. Through our actions such as the strategic energy program, promotion of walking and biking, restoration of natural resources, and green buildings, Berkeley’s passionate faculty, staff, and students have created many sites on campus that demonstrate our commitment to sustainability.

Now instead of just reading about these sites, you can go experience them directly!

Places to See on the Tour

1. Bicycle Parking at Wurster Hall

Campus is ever-expanding bicycle parking to accommodate over 5,500 pedal pushing commuters.  The bicycle parking patch at Wurster Hall, with it’s pervious surfaces to reduce stormwater runoff, is one such example.

2. ReUSE Station at North Barrows Hall

A student initiative, the Re-Used Stuff Emporium collects and redistributes gently used supplies for free.  Eighteen such stations across, including the repurposed phone booth at Barrows Hall pictured here, divert reusable materials from landfills.

3. Water Refill Station/s

Berkeley is now home to water refill stations in more than 20 buildings on campus, including Barrows Hall. Water stations encourage the community to  forego buying buying disposable plastic bottles in favor of drinking tap water from reusable bottles. This takes Berkeley closer to our zero waste goal.

5. Eshleman Hall and the Martin Luther King Jr Student Union

Lower Sproul achieved LEED Gold for both Eshleman Hall’s new construction and the MLK, Jr. Student Union’s commercial interiors. Sustainable features include a natural ventilation system, solar PV, water efficient landscaping, a stormwater collection system including a cistern and rain garden, over 100 bike racks, a student-run bike repair center, a new transit center, low flush toilets fed by rainwater, recycling and compost centers, and smart systems for HVAC, windows and lighting.

6. Strawberry Creek

Berkeley conducts an educational program to restore Strawberry Creek and its native species. Over 3,000 students annually use the creek as an outdoor lab.  Most recently, students, staff, and contractors planted the banks with native vegetation plus designed and installed ecological control structures for a degraded section of the creek.

7. Grinnell Glade Irrigation

The Glade is designed to conserve water through irrigation and decrease stormwater runoff. Nearby, the Dwinelle Parking lot was re-designed with permeable pavement and vegetated catchment areas to mitigate the runoff to Strawberry Creek.

8. Li Ka Shing Center

Our  LEED™ Gold Lab building utilizes green roofs, reclaimed-wood paneling, low-emitting office carpeting and rubber lab floors. It also features user-controlled shutters, real-time monitoring of energy and water use, and occupancy sensors for lighting.

9. Pat Brown's Grill, Genetics and Plant Biology Building

Pat Brown’s Grill is the first campus restaurant to be LEED™ certified. The renovation of Pat Brown’s includes a daylight responsive lighting system, Energy Star-certified kitchen equipment, reduced dishwater usage, and a green janitorial program. The kitchen uses scratch-cooking techniques to enhance vegetable flavor.  Omnivores can enjoy "better meat" options such as grassfed burgers and rotisserie organic chicken.

10. Jacobs Hall

The Jacobs Institute for Design Innovation at UC Berkeley has been named by the American Institute of Architects as one of the nation’s top 10 examples of sustainable architecture and ecological design. The Institute was awarded the highest honor of LEED™ platinum. Its rooftop solar arrays produce about 120,000 kWh of clean power each year for the building.

Also, off campus: 

Maximino Martinez Commons

To achieve it’s LEED™ Gold rating, the Maximino Martinez Commons residence hall includes maximized use of daylight, natural ventilation, a sophisticated nighttime cooling strategy, a hydronic and radiant heating system, plumbing and water systems designed to reduce water use by 30%.  The building design also incorporates water-saving native plants, a vegetated swale that captures and filters stormwater runoff, and reused materials salvaged from the former site.

Underhill Artificial Turf

The Underhill Field has a state of the art synthetic turf made from recycled truck and car tires called Sprinturf that takes less water than a standard lawn. The drain mat under the field, called DBS (Dynamic Base System), is made from recycled rubber.

Download the Green Walking Tour!

You can download a copy of the SUSTAINABILITY WALKING TOUR. You are welome to print this campus guide for your walkabout. However, if you can view the tour on your iPad or laptop, please consider augmenting your reality digitally to save trees. 

graphic of sustainability walking tour