UWCU unveils new headquarters with focus on green infrastructure

UW Credit Union unveiled its new corporate headquarters Thursday on Madison’s west side.

On June 6, UW Credit Union hosted a tour of its new corporate headquarters, 8033 Excelsior Dr., which brings together its lending services, Member Solutions Center and administrative office. The new headquarters spans 150,000 square feet and features improvements to workspace and green infrastructure. Headquarters relocated from 3500 University Ave, which UW Credit Union occupied since 1995.

Photo by Hedi LaMarr Rudd.

The new headquarters focuses on the climate-conscious approach in its design. The space boasts a 41% projected annual savings in energy, reducing overall environmental burdens, geothermal heating and cooling, 561 solar panels and increased access to natural light with large windows everywhere.

“Younger workforce, that reflects their values. They want to work for an organization that they see is actually in the game with sustainability,” said UW Credit Union CEO Paul Kundert. “We’re very much interested in connecting people to the outdoors as well, and so all of that was factored in the building and designing it.”

The campus utilizes access to public infrastructure, like bike trails, sidewalks and bus routes, to encourage a reduction in use of cars. Mayor Satya Rhodes-Conway showed that the closest bus stop is only a four minute walk away from the headquarters.

UWCU Paul Kundert addresses visitors at the unveiling of the credit union’s new headquarters. Photo by Omar Waheed.

The implementation of stormwater retention was factored into the building. Wisconsin has seen a recent uptick in flooding due to stormwater runoffs filling sewer systems. Milwaukee alone has seen an extreme increase in flooding from recent heavy rains causing the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District to request residents to reduce water usage.

UWCU’s water management system mirrors a recent project in Milwaukee, where. Wellpoint Care Network added their own systems to reduce flooding in the area with its remodeling and Green Stormwater Infrastructure project.

“The rain falls on everybody. So we actually do really need folks like UW Credit Union, what they’ve done on this site, to be thoughtful and proactive about stormwater management, and they have really, I think, gone above and beyond, to incorporate green infrastructure into their stormwater management in a way that helps to reduce the risk of flooding, helps to increase filtration on site,” Mayor Rhodes-Conway said.

Mayor Rhodes-Conway points at the big flood in 2018 and the city’s efforts to address further issues with stormwater into account with new construction. Madison is currently in the process of mapping every watershed in the city to understand where the highest pain points are, the mayor said.

UW Credit Union’s measures to reduce stormwater runoff comes in practical, beautification efforts. The new headquarters area uses biofiltration measures, underground storage and detention basins to manage stormwater on-site. The use of dry stream bed, a river consisting of rocks, to guide water and drainage.

Other additions into the headquarters include a bike shed, heavy use of outdoor space for meetings and lunch, a kitchen area, an overlook that sees all, office space, a space filled with UW Credit Union’s memorabilia from its 90 years, a variety of meeting rooms and a fitness center.