Material Health and Sustainability Features - E38, Third Floor

On the third floor of Building E38—home to MITOS along with the Environmental Solutions Initiative and the Abdul Latif Jameel Water and Food Systems Lab—sustainably sourced and low VOC materials and finishes are being tested by occupants each day. Though E38 has countless green building features—the third floor alone has nearly one dozen unique features and finishes including floor tiles, solar shades, countertops, and millwork—some of the materials on the third floor are being used for the first time on campus in order to test their viability as sustainable alternatives for additional spaces around campus.

To get these materials and features in place, Director of Sustainability Julie Newman worked with Systems Performance and Turnover’s Senior Sustainability Project Manager Randa Ghattas to select these test bed features which include: faux wood resilient tile, PVC-free and resilient engineered porcelain countertops, and bio-based edge banding for millwork. These items were chosen for both their sustainability of sourcing and impact on building occupants—looking for materials that are PVC-free and low VOC as both are tied to harmful effects for those using or manufacturing them.

As occupants use the office each day, the viability of these materials is tested for use in other spaces on campus. Learn more about the specific materials in this space and their impact below. Explore other renovated spaces on campus including New Vassar and Hayden Memorial Library for other materials being tested and highlighted on building signage. 

office kitchen island and sinks
Health and Sustainability Features

Gyp board

Product: USG Eco-Smart

This product is used throughout the floor and is low in volatile organic compounds (VOC) which off-gas potentially harmful and irritating chemicals; Greenguard Gold certified. Less water is used in manufacturing process. This product has reduced weight relative to comparables, reducing fuel emissions during transit. 



Product: Sherwin Williams ProMar200 Zero VOC

This paint is 100 percent VOC free and Greenguard Gold certified and complies with LEED and other green guidelines and regulations.



Product: Armstrong Tectum

This product is used throught the floor and low in volatile organic compounds (VOC) which off-gas potentially harmful and irritating chemicals; Greenguard Gold Certified. Overall 60 percent recycled content with 11 percent of that being post-consumer recycled content. 


Acoustical Ceilings

Product: EzoBord

This product is low-emitting and VOC-free with 40-50 percent of the product made from post-consumer recycled materials. All scrap material from manufacturing is recycled back into the manufacturing process. 



Product: Mohawk Broadloom – Karastan Applied Art

This carpet found in conference rooms is made of modular tiles, making it easier to replace when needed and using less material when an area needs replacing. The carpet is low emitting and Carpet and Rug Institutes GreenLabel Plus certified, which tests carpets, cushioning, and adhesive for low VOCs. The carpet tiles are 12 percent post-consumer recycled content. 



Product: Bio Plastic Solutions – Bio-based edge banding

This banding is PVC-free and made of 90-96 percent bio-based materials including  sugar cane and corn, resulting in a cleaner manufacturing process. 

axon of office kitchen


Product: Crossville Porcelain Panels

These porcelain panels used for the kitchen countertops are made with a cleaner manufacturing process than cmparable products, are low-VOC and Greenguard Gold certified and are made of 6-20 percent pre-consumer recycled content.

Window Solar Shades

Product: Draper Shade w/ Phifer Sheerweave Infinity 2

These window shades used throughout the space are low-VOC, Greenguard Gold certified, and made of PVC-free shade materials.


Rubber Base/Trim

Product: Nora

This rubber base found throughout the floor is low-VOC, Greenguard Gold certifed, made from 14 percent pre-consumer recycled content and is made through a sustainable manufacturing process.


Resilient Plank Flooring

Product: Mohawk – Faux Wood Plank, Pivot Point

This faux wood plan flooring used in the MITOS conference room is modular tile, making it easier to replace and using less material when area needs to be replaced. It's also low emitting, PVC-free, and Floorscore certified for indoor air quality impact.