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All Project Updates


  1. Weekly Update

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, last week was slow at the beginning every day of the week but by around 4pm things would pick up drastically and we’d be “All Stands Full” for the last hour or so. I used to blame the uptick around 4pm on class schedules but it’s summer so now I have no idea why we get busier then.

    Visitors count was at 100 even (for the second week in a row, I believe).

    Total sales: $1,363.10; refurbished bike sales: 3 for $430; Build-a-Bikes: 3 for $250; memberships: 11 for $330; consumables (cables/housing, tires/tubes): 27 between the four of those, totaling $85.10.

    Last week was the conclusion of having Kameron, the high school student, helping here at the CBC. He really warmed up to being here, I think (or so I tell myself) and was much more comfortable organizing and sorting small esoteric bike parts than doing anything bigger like stripping or building up bicycles.

    On  Friday I made a bike run to the warehouse and picked up 10 bikes. I saw a great number of decent and capable commuter bikes, dotted amongst the majority of WalMart-level junk. It was good to get an injection of new bike blood into the crop of bikes available here.

    I also put the final touches on the ECS bike share bikes and outfitted them with baskets.

    This week I will process and build some of the new bikes as demand for for-sale bikes is increasing. I have begun to hear back from returning student staffers about possible scheduling, which is helpful, so I will continue to plan for that.  


    • Jake Benjamin
      Campus Bike Center Manager
  2. Update from Joy Scrogum

    Associated Project(s): 

    Hello colleagues. I wanted to take a moment to give you an update on the Illini Gadget Garage (IGG) project and alert you to some upcoming events which may be of interest.

    First of all, tomorrow, Tuesday August 1, we’re hosting a group laptop teardown activity from 10:15am-1:00pm. This event is for those who may be curious about/interested in the sort of “do-it-together” repair that is conducted at the IGG, but who feel a bit hesitant to try because of lack of experience, or because they fear they’ll cause further damage to their own device. We have a limited number of matching laptops that were donated as “practice” devices which we’ll be using to lead folks through the process of dismantling. This provides experience with using tools and with opening up an electronic device, so that individuals can feel empowered and more confident about opening a device in the future which may actually need repair. Space is limited, but we do have some seats still available. Sign up at If there is high demand, we’ll potentially hold a similar event in the near future. The workshop is free, though donations are welcome and can be made at

    Also, we’ll be hosting a screening of Death by Design, a documentary on the impacts of electronic devices on the environment and human health. The screening will take place on August 22 at the Champaign Public Library. After the film, I will facilitate a discussion/Q&A session featuring Industrial Design Professor William Bullock and Urbana U-Cycle Coordinator and Illinois Product Stewardship Council member Courtney Kwong as expert panelists. See for further information, including a trailer for the film. This is also a free event, with donations suggested and welcome to support future programming.

    If you missed last week’s webinar, “What the Tech? Learn Basic Electronic Component Function,” an archived recording and slides are available on our project web site at

    We’ll also have booths at Quad Day and the Taste of Champaign next month, as well as having project flyers distributed by our friends at the City of Urbana during the Urbana Sweetcorn Festival. So hopefully we’ll see a new wave of potential volunteers and clients coming to our workshop to learn about ways to keep their products in service longer, and out of the waste stream.

    We’re currently seeking sponsors to help keep our services free to the campus community, and to allow us to offer free-to-the public pop-ups in the broader, off-campus CU area. Additionally, we are offering a new “employee engagement event” service for businesses and organizations seeking a unique way to get their employees involved in sustainability discussions and efforts. See for more information.

    As some of you may remember, we experienced some setbacks with being able to be open to public, as our workshop required renovation to be ADA compliant. Thus, we have only be officially open to the general public since last fall, but we’ve still managed to have a significant positive impact:

    • We've diverted a total of 320.41 lbs. of devices from the landfill (140.88 lbs. during the spring semester alone). 
    • We've recycled a total of 78 lbs. of single-use batteries (and are now offering both single-use and rechargeable battery collection).
    • We've helped over 100 people to troubleshoot/repair their devices.

    We’ve also had students involved as volunteers, participants in UI courses that have collaborated  with the IGG, and as participants in the iFixit Technical Writing Project, creating repair guides that are shared on the iFixit web site so the spirit of collaborative repair that we foster is spread beyond our campus, and even beyond our state. See the “Our Impact” portion of our web site for more information.

    If you have questions, or would like to discuss potential collaborations, please don’t hesitate to contact me. I hope to see some of you at tomorrow’s workshop and at the documentary screening on the 22nd.

    Best wishes,


    Joy Scrogum

    Sustainability Specialist

    LEED Green Associate | ISSP-SA

    Illinois Sustainable Technology Center (ISTC) | Prairie Research Institute

    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

    One Hazelwood Drive, Champaign, IL 61820

  3. Weekly update for Zero Waste

    Associated Project(s): 

    Hello all,

    Here are my updates from last week:

    • Contacted Midwest Fiber, which recently acquired CRI. CRI had quoted a price to provide glass recycling service to the Wounded Vets Center of $36-$48/month, depending on whether one or two 96-gallon toters would be needed. Midwest Fiber wants to do a site visit before giving a revised estimate. I will work this coming week to arrange it. The goal is to have service in place in a couple of weeks so that it is available when the majority of residents move in in August. I will also clarify with Nick that Wounded Vets will need to pay for the service.
    • Continued mapping the outdoor trash bins on campus as part of the project to replace them with dual recycling/trash bins.

    Marya Ryan
    Zero Waste Coordinator


  4. Weekly update for Zero Waste

    Associated Project(s): 

    Hello all,

    Here are my updates from last week:

    • Contacted Morgan for invoicing/account information to set up glass recycling for the Wounded Vets Center, which is planned to start in mid-August.
    • Started work on mapping where trash bins are on campus. I anticipate completing the task over the next couple of weekends when I am in town.

    Best regards,

    Marya Ryan
    Zero Waste Coordinator


  5. Building History Records

    Associated Project(s): 

    To get the noticeable events (such as remodeling and retrocommissioning) that happened in each building, Ms. Morgan Johnston, Ms. Anna Barnes, and I are reviewing the detailed records that F&S has for all projects on campus. This week, I focused on sorting through folders pertaining to records of the 10 selected buildings and marked documents that might be useful for the final energy report cards. Ms. Johnston will then share the marked documents with me.


    The next step is to read through all the shared documents and record noticeable events that contribute to the change in energy usage. Meanwhile, since energy usage for FY17 has become available, I will be updating the excel sheets and graphs created earlier to include the new data.


  6. Second Input session

    Associated Project(s): 

    On July 20, 2017, a second Public Input session was held for the update to the Red Oak Rain Garden.  Cameron Letterly presented two concepts for the rain garden, and groups of participants provided written and verbal feedback. 

  7. BIF Greywater Meter Recommendation - approved

    The Water and Stormwater SWATeam recommendation to install a real-time water meter on the greywater pipes in the Business Instructional Facility has been approved by F&S leadership.  This project will proceed with funding from the Student Sustainability Committee and F&S Utilities & Energy Services.

  8. archived info - previous project description

    Associated Project(s): 

    The Business Instructional Facility (BIF) was designed for future use of greywater, which is raw (untreated) water. Although the building is fed from the potable water supply, there is separate piping for the urinals and water closets in the building. Utilities does not yet have a greywater system in place. When such a system becomes available, the connection in BIF that serves its fixtures can then be transferred to the greywater supply.

  9. Paper Policy Recommendation - approved

    F&S Interim Executive Director Helen Coleman approved F&S staff time to work on updating the Campus Administrative Manual (CAM) policy for Zero Waste.  Morgan Johnston will take the lead on this effort. The actual policy update will need approval from the CAM advisory committee.

  10. archived info - previous project description

    Associated Project(s): 

    One of the strategies regarding the purchasing, waste, and recycling targets put forth in the iCAP Portal is setting and enforcing minimum recycled-content standards.

    The targets for purchasing, waste, and recycling are to adopt a long-term Zero Waste campus policy by 2011 and increasing waste diversion to 75 percent by 2020. By setting and enforcing minimum recycled content standards within purchasing, the University can greatly reduce the number of environmentally irresponsible products they purchase.

  11. archived info - previous project description

    University departments and units should purchase products with recycled material content whenever cost, specifications, standards, and availability are comparable to products without recycled content. The University will identify those items that are frequently purchase for which recycled-content items can be substituted. Additional preference will be given to the specification of items with the highest percentage content of recycled material.

    Examples of products and materials covered include, but are not limited to: office supplies, paper products, building materials, lubricants of all types, reprocessed chemicals, remanufactured parts, landscape products (yard waste), and materials used in pavement construction projects. The use of recycled materials is also encouraged when orders are placed for printed goods (i.e. brochures, catalogs, books, letterheads, business cars, etc). In addition, the procurement guidelines seek to eliminate the purchase of non-recyclable materials when suitable substitutes exist.

  12. Campus Tree Inventory Recommendation - approved

    The ALUFS SWATeam recommended that F&S complete an update to the campus tree inventory.  This recommendation was supported by the iCAP Working Group, and the Campus Tree Advisory Committee.  During spring 2017, Director of iSEE Evan DeLucia and Interim Executive Director of F&S Helen Coleman both approved using Carbon Credit Sales funding to complete the inventory.  Campus Landscape Architect Brent Lewis will be responsible for initiating the inventory and working with Superintendent of Grounds Ryan Welch to oversee the progress.

  13. Weekly Update

    Associated Project(s): 

    All, last week was abbreviated: first by the weather on Wednesday (95° was the afternoon high, so I did not have open hours for safety reasons); and then on Friday as I was out of town for my  grandmother’s funeral. We only totaled 62 visitors for the week. Sales were $368 net for the week. We didn’t sell any refurbished bikes. We sold one build-a-bike for $43; four memberships for $120; 10 tires/tubes (used/new) for $41.

    This week I plan to build more bikes, organize parts with Kameron (the high school student), and work on scheduling for the Fall semester. It projects to be very hot the tail end of the week so I will explore options and ways of trying to keep the Bike Center from being dangerously hot so we don’t have to shutter the doors again.


    • Jake Benjamin
      Campus Bike Center Manager
  14. Water Quality Report

    Associated Project(s): 

    The 2016 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Water Quality Report was released in June. The report provides information about the source of campus drinking water, contaminant testing, general health precautions, and how sample results compare to regulatory requirements. The university has met all U.S. EPA and Illinois EPA drinking water quality standards.

  15. Wassaja Hall earns LEED certification

    Associated Project(s): 

    Wassaja Hall became the campus’ 11th facility to receive LEED® certification from the U.S. Green Building Council in February. The University of Illinois is a national leader in green building design with more than 2.4M GSF on campus.

  16. 2009 Gable House moved

    Associated Project(s): 

    Student Sustainability Committee and the School of Architecture worked with F&S to move the 2009 Solar Decathlon House from I Hotel grounds, where it was located for seven years. The house moved to the Energy Bioscience Research Farm on Race Street south of Windsor Road. The 695-square foot building, weighing more than 50,000 pounds, was designed by University of Illinois students and took second place in the U.S Department of Energy’s 2009 Solar Decathlon. Since then it has been used by various campus units, who study the design and construction of the building.

  17. Promotion of source separation

    Content has been drafted for a PowerPoint presentation to encourage the use of separate bins for recyclables and trash. It will emphasize that separation at the point of disposal is more effective than the older system of placing all items in a single bin and will therefore help the campus meet landfill diversion targets. The presentation will be made over the summer to Campus business officers, the Staff HR Advisory Council, and student groups that can talk to other groups.