Greening of the IMU

Facilitated by a $50,000 grant from the Duke Energy Foundation, the Greening of the IMU (GIMU) project was completed in 2010. 

In early December of 2009, the Indiana University community and environmental experts came together to discuss improving sustainability practices at IU’s iconic Indiana Memorial Union. The Greening of the IMU, led by the Office of Sustainability at IU Bloomington, brought together IU students, faculty and staff with nationally recognized experts in the field of green building. The intense, two-day green planning process - also known as an “eco-charrette” - focused on ideas for more efficient energy use at the IMU.

Project Planners

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The GIMU grant provided funding for a nationally recognized specialist to guide the green planning process. The grant proposal -- submitted by Hellmuth +Bicknese LLC, led by principal Dan Hellmuth, and the Leonardo Academy, led by Michael Arny -- was chosen based on the team’s extensive experience with green building design and eco-charrettes.

Daniel Hellmuth, an architect from Hellmuth +Bicknese LLC, offered guidance on campus sustainability and using the Greening of the IMU as a prototype for the rest of the campus. Hellmuth +Bicknese recently completed the Tyson Living Learning Center (

This is an extraordinary opportunity to not only Green the IMU but also to use this as a catalyst to build on where IU Bloomington as an institution already is in respect to campus sustainability, said Hellmuth. It is coming at an opportune time when the IMU itself is entertaining some major renovations to better serve the students, a new Sustainable Master Plan has just been completed and recommendations in Campus Sustainability Report are being enacted campuswide.

One of Thursday’s featured speakers, Michael Arny, of The Leonardo Academy, will speak about Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) for Existing Buildings. The Leonardo Academy is one of the nation’s most experienced LEED for Existing Buildings experts, with established projects such as the LEED EB Platinum Clinton Library, National Geographic Society Headquarters and JohnsonDiversey Headquarters.

The Team

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More than 50 participants, including local and state experts, volunteered their time to support the charrette. Other attendees included representatives from the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and the Association for College Unions International (ACUI).

The initiative coincided with the 100th anniversary of the Indiana Memorial Union Board, established in 1909 as a campus organization. The Greening of the IMU will culminate in a report to guide renovation and operational decisions.

Participants analyzed such topics as the interior and exterior of the building; mechanical, energy and lighting processes; transportation and parking; purchasing procedures; and food service and hospitality functions. Energy and operations savings are expected to quickly repay the cost of the initiative, which includes employing a specialist to guide the planning process.

IU student and sustainability interns Nathan Bower-Bir and Farah Abi-Akar assisted IU engineers with an assessment of the building's energy and water use and other planning and reporting needs in preparation for the eco-charrette. A graduate-level class in the School of Public and Environmental Affairs, titled “Sustainability Leadership,” provided preliminary data gathering for the Greening of the IMU and participate in the two-day program. A summer sustainability intern, Jenna Morrison, assisted with the grant application that was successful in obtaining funding from Duke Energy Foundation for the project.

Joe DavisBalebuildersOwner
Natalie StuckyBose McKinney & Evans LLPGreen Attorney
Dan OverbeyBrowning Day Mullins Dierdorf ArchitectsAssoc. Architect, LEED AP
Pam Chapman?Duke EnergyDirector of Bloomington Office
Tom DurkinDurkin & Villalta Partners EngineeringPrincipal
Ron SzumskiEcolab Pest EliminationAccount Executive - Indianapolis South
Jennifer RobertsElements EngineeringPrincipal
Dan HellmuthH+B/Leonardo Academy TeamPrincipal, Hellmuth+Bicknese LLC
Wanda EvansH+B/Leonardo Academy TeamSustainable Design Consultant, H+B
Michael ArnyH+B/Leonardo Academy TeamPresident, Leonardo Academy
Brett KrugH+B/Leonardo Academy TeamSenior Engineer, Solutions AEC
Ralph BickneseH+B/Leonardo Academy TeamPrincipal, Hellmuth + Bicknese LLC
Ted BlahnikH+B/Leonardo Academy TeamPrincipal, Williams Creek
Ted MendozaIndependent ConsultingPrincipal
Karen HansonIU AdministrationProvost
Thomas MorrisonIU AdministrationVP Capital Proj & Facilities
Sherry RouseIU Art MuseumCurator of Campus Art
Chris ReynoldsIU Athletic DepartmentSenior Associate AD
Charlie MatsonIU EngineeringSpecial Projects Engineer
Dan DerheimerIU Environmental Health and SafetyEnvironmental Manager
Anita DouglasIU IMUAsst. Dir. Admin. Services
Brandi HostIU IMURooms Divison Manager
Bruce JacobsIU IMUExecutive Director
Gary ChrzastowskiIU IMUAsst Director, Facility Services
Rob MeyerIU IMUAsst Director, Activities & Events
Thom SimmonsIU IMUAssociation Director
James StillIU IMU Union BoardUnion Board Member
Kathy McCarnesIU LibrariesDirector of Bus. Affairs, Sust., and Facilities
Andrew LibbyIU Office of Service LearningOffice of Service Learning
Nicole SchonemannIU Office of Service LearningDirector, Office of Service Learning
Bill BrownIU Office of SustainabilityDirector
Emilie RexIU Office of SustainabilitySustainability Program Coordinator
Nathan Bower-BirIU Office of SustainabilityGIMU Sustainability Intern
Bob RichardsonIU UAOUniversity Architect
David WalterIU UAOArchitect
Jeff KadenIU UAOUniversity Engineer
Ian KaelbleIUSASustainability Director
Cynthia BrubakerMiddle Way HouseProject Development Coordinator
Jim KienleMoody-Nolan, IncDir. Of Historic Preservation Studio
Phil YuskaPerformance ServicesBus. Dev. Manager
John GroanRamsey & North Mechanical Services, Inc.Customer Service Rep
Graeme SharpeSilver Creek Engineering, Inc.MLSE, LEED AP, Indiana PE
Steve ManganSodexo Dining ServicesGeneral Manager
Steve AshkinThe Ashkin Group, LLCPresident
Kristin SimmonsUSGBC NationalGreen Campus Group