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School of Architecture Student—Contributing to a Sustainable University of Hawaii Campus AND Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology—Moving Toward a Sustainable Future on Coconut Island

Stephen Meder, University of Hawaii School of Architecture

Poster 1: School of Architecture Student—Contributing to a Sustainable University of Hawaii Campus


To illustrate the whole system approach to design that is being undertaken by students at the University of Hawaii's School of Architecture. Although the work, in this case, is not directed specifically to a laboratory building, the investigations and preliminary designs exemplify the resource and energy conservation considerations necessary for high performance laboratories and low impact site design. Students incorporating energy, resource efficiency, and renewable energy applications today will be designing the innovative, high performance labs of tomorrow.


The poster depicting the student's work will present analysis and drawings for passive design strategies, innovative HVAC and renewable energy systems, water conservation, and energy efficiency applications. The poster will also demonstrate the students' ability to focus specific design applications to effect large-scale environmental solutions.

Poster 2: Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology—Moving Toward a Sustainable Future on Coconut Island


The University of Hawaii's Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology and Sea Grant Program are committed to the principles of sustainability in the design and operation of new lab buildings, and in the renovation of existing facilities.

As a centerpiece of this commitment, the university is planning to build a new 15,000 square foot laboratory on Coconut Island, joining a number of existing laboratories at the Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology. The island, located just off the coast of Oahu, is unique in that it is also a salt-water laboratory and the only place in the world where a laboratory sits directly on top of a living coral reef. The new facility will serve as a "living laboratory" to test out new ideas and approaches. With over 1,000 scientists and 3,500 other visitors coming to the island each year, the laboratory will also serve as a magnet for showcasing sustainability through its demonstration laboratories and facilities.

The Center will serve as a model of sustainability for the university, as well as the state of Hawaii and other coastal communities in the region.

This poster will illustrate the principles behind the new laboratory proposal.


Hawaii Institute of Marine Biology poster will reflect the existing conditions in the laboratory and office spaces and project the improvement in energy performance, resource conservation, indoor air quality, and elevated quality of life that is expected to be delivered and enjoyed in the new lab building.

Labs21 Connection:

Both posters illustrate the importance of design in the optimized energy and resource use in laboratory buildings. Each poster reflects the respective importance of education to achieving the goals of improved quality of life through healthful, high performing lab and university buildings.


Stephen Meder is the Director of the Environmental Systems Laboratory at the University of Hawaii, School of Architecture where he is a member of the faculty. Meder has a Doctor of Architecture degree from the University of Hawaii. He directs the school's energy and environmental research projects and teaches sustainable architecture design to graduate and undergraduate architecture students along with core classes in hydraulics, lighting, and mechanical systems design. Meder was recently a principal author for a U.S. Department of Energy publication on energy efficient residential design entitled, "Field Guide for Energy Performance and Comfort in Hawaii Homes". He was a steering committee member for the recently completed "Hawaii Built Green" home rating system for the Building Industry Association of Hawaii. He is a member of the State of Hawaii Commercial Building Guidelines Advisory Group, and was instrumental in initiating the first Energy Efficient Mortgages and Residential Energy Star Programs in Hawaii. He is past chair of the Energy and Environment Committee of the Honolulu Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (1999-03) and remains an active member of that committee.

Meder has designed building integrated photovoltaic systems for the U.S. Navy, the United States Postal Service, and the Hawaii utilities. He has conducted photovoltaic design workshops around the state and is currently directing a study to assess the solar energy potential on Hawaii's buildings. Meder was awarded a Federal Energy Management Program (FEMP) 2001 Project of the Year Award from the U.S. Department of Energy for his design work of the roof integrated photovoltaic system at Pearl Harbor.

In 2002, Meder co-authored the University of Hawaii Charter of Sustainability and has been very active in working to establish programs to reduce water and energy demand on campus and to assist in establishing the University of Hawaii as a model for a sustainable future.

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