The Dana Building

A Home for Sustainably-Minded Students

An award-winning model of green building practices, The Samuel Trask Dana Building has housed the School for Environment and Sustainability (SEAS) since 1961. Located on the University of Michigan’s central campus Diag, the Dana Building utilizes the latest renewable energy systems and conservation measures. Students have access to world-class study spaces, labs, and studios designed to foster community and enhance sustainable learning.

Energy Conservation

Dana utilizes sustainable energy through 

  • solar panels supplementing university-supplied power

  • a 4,000-square-foot skylight helping to heat the building and provide light

  • sensor-activated light fixtures in areas requiring artificial light

  • a radiant cooling system

  • a digital control system to detect shortages, leaks, and other problems

Water Conservation

Dana’s water-saving fixtures include

  • sensor-activated water faucets

  • low-flow plumbing fixtures

  • waterless urinals

  • three composting toilets

Green Landscaping

Outside Dana you will find

  • Northeast flora

  • Midwest flora

  • trees that reduce the need for irrigation and provide habitat for local creatures

Green Materials

The Dana Building’s sustainable materials include

  • timbers from the building’s attic re-milled for furniture and trim

  • salvaged bricks used in the Ford Commons bathroom

  • office furniture and auditorium chairs upholstered with fabric from plastic bottles

  • bathroom wall and floor tiles composed of recycled glass from airplane windshields

  • natural cork flooring


The Dana Building renovation received a Gold LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) rating from the U.S. Green Building Council in May 2005. It was the first major renovation of an academic building to receive such a high rating for sustainable construction in Michigan and among the first in the nation.



"Greenest academic building in the state of Michigan at U-M"