One of the most visible building features when entering through the science enclave is the rainwater collection system. Rain that hits the building’s roof is gathered and travels down spouts on the north and west side of the building. The spouts empty onto boulders, hand selected from Stony Creek Quarry in Branford by Centerbrook Architects with assistance from Earth Science Professor Tom Fleming.
The stones exhibit both the raw tool marks of quarry operations as well as further shaping by quarry master, Richard Atkinson, to receive the falling water. The water is then funneled into a 40,000-gallon underground rainwater collection system that provides hydration for the surrounding greenery. A UV water purification system eliminates bacteria. The system reduces the amount of potable water needed for this irrigation by 50 percent.
Functioning as an outdoor classroom, Southern’s geological rock garden showcases rocks that are indigenous to Connecticut. Creation of the interactive educational display — which includes rocks donated by numerous quarry operators in the region — was overseen by Thomas Fleming, professor of earth science. Fun factShow hotspots
The Greater New Haven area is home to the second-largest cluster of biotechnology companies in New England.