Facilities Planning, Design, & Sustainability
 The University of Georgia
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UGA studies
show that
the built 


attitude, productivity, and

The SDPL Program
 public and
private organizations
for the
planning and
  concept design.

About SDPL
Planning activities require a wide range of knowledge, skills, patience, and a genuine concern for people that use a facility.  The School Design and Planning Laboratory (SDPL), since 1997, has served as an International information source, encouraging the involvement of a broad community base in planning for educational facilities. One major success has been the involvement of UGA graduate students in training and the practice of planning and designing facilities.  The influence and success of this program has extended beyond UGA.

One special extension and success has been for graduate students at Johns Hopkins University.  As visiting professor at Johns Hopkins University, Dr. Tanner applied  Focused Strategic Planning methods in facilities development that was conceptualized and tested at UGA.  One noteworthy success of the SDPL and Johns Hopkins collaboration was led and inspired by a graduate student from Florida that proposed "Green Design for Schools",  The result was special changes at Saint Andrew's School, Florida.

Historically, the Primary Purpose of of the SDPL was to promote effective, unbiased leadership in all focused strategic planning and design activities for public and independent school systems and public agencies. Our aim was to minimize error in forecasting, planning, and design through current technology, research, and client participation. 

The SDPL had its beginning in 1997 through a grant funded by the Georgia Board of Regents. One purpose was to expand educational facilities planning courses at UGA by utilizing new media and Internet technology, while providing a source of research and training regarding how the physical environment influences behavior and attitudes.  Another purpose was to conduct data-based research on how the physical environment influences behavior and attitude of students and school personnel. 

Pre-design and pre-planning activities may be conducted by the SDPL for public and educational organizations.  The SDPL welcomes planning partners to help us plan and design facilities according to research-based principles!  Best practices, while sometimes good for some situations, are always questioned, since what worked for someone else may not work in another unique situation.