This week, the American Institute of Architects' Committe on the Environment (COTE) announced its Top Ten Green Projects. The program, in its 14th year, applauds structures that incorporate sustainable systems in its architecture, natural systems, and technology and extend beyond the skin of the building and use strategies that incorporate existing buildings, place the structures close to public transit systems, and more.
Project: Manassas Park Elementary School + Pre-KLocation: Manassas Park, VirginiaView: Outdoor classroomArchitect:VMDO Architects, P.C.AIA summary: "MPES is fundamentally designed around the premise that people, especially children, cannot be expected to preserve or protect something they do not understand. As such, the school is conceived throughout as a teaching tool that shepherds children along a path of environmental stewardship. Inside and out, sustainable design is integrated with the elementary curriculum. Design decisions were made with the expressed goal of showcasing as many teachable moments as possible. Interior extended learning spaces offer dramatic and surprisingly intimate views of the neighboring mixed oak forest, while elementary classrooms face shady moss and fern-covered learning courtyards featuring “fallen” trees and other particularities of an eastern deciduous forest floor." Photo by VMDO Architects.
Project: Manassas Park Elementary School + Pre-KLocation: Manassas Park, VirginiaView: CourtyardArchitect:VMDO Architects, P.C.Photo by Prakash Patel.
Project: Manassas Park Elementary School + Pre-KLocation: Manassas Park, VirginiaView: Breakout spaceArchitect:VMDO Architects, P.C.Photo by Prakash Patel.
Project: Manitoba Hydro PlaceLocation: Winnipeg, ManitobaView: ExteriorArchitect:Kuwabara Payne McKenna Blumberg Architects and Smith Carter Architects and EngineersAIA summary: "Manitoba Hydro Place was designed utilizing a formal integrated design process to achieve daunting goals of energy efficiency, healthy workplace environment, urban revitalization, sustainability and architectural excellence. A model for bioclimatic design in an extreme climate that fluctuates 70°C annually, the ‘Capital A’ form is site specific to harness the maximum amount of passive solar and wind energies and to provide 100% fresh air, 24/7. At 88 kwh/m2/annually, from a demand side, it is the most energy efficient large office tower in North America, with a 66% improvement over the standard. While targeting LEED Platinum certification, Manitoba Hydro Place has, more importantly, achieved its ultimate goal of a superior indoor environment for the health and well-being of its employees." Photo by Eduard Hueber/Arch Photo Inc. Courtesy of �Eduard Hueber/archphoto.
Project: Michael J. Homer Science & Student Life CenterLocation: Atherton, CaliforniaView: CourtyardArchitect:Leddy Maytum Stacy ArchitectsAIA summary: "The 44,109 square foot building incorporates an unusual hybrid program of eight sophisticated science classrooms, a 700-seat auditorium, a 350-seat dining hall with full commercial kitchen, and administrative offices in spaces that inspire scientific inquiry, foster a strong learning community and promote environmental stewardship. The Homer Center supports Sacred Heart Schools’ educational mission, inspiring respect for creation and teaching eco-literacy by offering a variety of integrated educational environments that connect students and faculty to the natural world around them on a daily basis. The design encourages scientific inquiry, linking the school’s science curriculum to building functions throughout the seasons – how it breathes, resists gravity, conserves precious resources and generates energy." Photo by Tim Griffith.
Project: Michael J. Homer Science & Student Life CenterLocation: Atherton, CaliforniaView: Interior stairsArchitect:Leddy Maytum Stacy ArchitectsPhoto by Tim Griffith.
Project: Michael J. Homer Science & Student Life CenterLocation: Atherton, CaliforniaView: ExteriorArchitect:Leddy Maytum Stacy ArchitectsPhoto by Tim Griffith.
Project: KAUSTLocation: Thuwal, Kingdom of Saudi ArabiaView: Exterior, campusArchitect:HOKAIA summary: "King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) is a new international, graduate-level research university established to drive innovation in science and technology and to support world-class research in areas such as energy and the environment. KAUST's new campus is the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's first LEED certified project and the world's largest LEED Platinum project. By integrating sustainable measures into the site planning, the community, the building design and the campus operations, the university is demonstrating new ways to build in the region and promoting responsible stewardship of the environment." Photo by JB Picoulet.
Project: KAUSTLocation: Thuwal, Kingdom of Saudi ArabiaView: Exterior, single buildingArchitect:HOKPhoto by JB Picoulet.
Project: KAUSTLocation: Thuwal, Kingdom of Saudi ArabiaView: Courtyard between buildingsArchitect:HOKPhoto by JB Picoulet.
Project: Kroon Hall, Yale UniversityLocation: New Haven, ConnecticutView: Exterior at nightArchitect:Hopkins Architects and Centerbrook Architects & PlannersAIA summary: "Replacing a brownfield site, Kroon Hall was charged with being a net zero energy building. The architects and the University wanted Kroon Hall to set a new standard for schools around the country. It had to function not simply as a sustainable overlay that offset unsustainable practices in people’s everyday lives but as something that inspired and encouraged people to alter their lives and become more sustainable citizens. This was accomplished through a mix of active and passive design measures and visible, invisible and interactive building features." Photo by Morley Von Sternberg.
Project: Omega Center for Sustainable LivingLocation: Rhinebeck, New YorkView: ExteriorArchitect:BNIM ArchitectsAIA summary: "The Omega Center for Sustainable Living (OCSL) is a very purposeful building and site, designed to clean water, return the clean water to the local systems, and educate users about the process. Eco-Machine™ technologies were selected to clean the water utilizing natural systems including the earth, plants and sunlight. The entire building and water process utilize site harvested renewable energy achieving a net zero energy system. This required the facility to be free of waste (volume, material, energy), organized and carefully tuned to harvest solar energy for passive heating and lighting, utilizing the entire mass for thermal comfort. The resultant design’s simplicity and elegance fit its noble purpose." Photo by Assassi.
Project: Omega Center for Sustainable LivingLocation: Rhinebeck, New YorkView: EntranceArchitect:BNIM ArchitectsPhoto by Assassi.
Project: Omega Center for Sustainable LivingLocation: Rhinebeck, New YorkView: "Eco-machine"Architect:BNIM ArchitectsPhoto by Assassi.
Project: Special No. 9 HouseLocation: New Orleans, LouisianaView: ExteriorArchitect:KieranTimberlakeAIA summary: "The Special No. 9 House was designed for the Make It Right Foundation to provide storm-resistant, affordable, and sustainable housing options for the residents of New Orleans’ Lower Ninth Ward displaced by Hurricane Katrina. To support Make It Right’s goal of building 150 homes in the Lower Ninth Ward, this single-family home is poised for mass production, anticipating a shift from on-site to off-site fabrication as more homes are scheduled for construction. Key goals were to create safe, healthy and dignified housing to residents in a flood-prone area, and to empower residents to return to improved living conditions that take advantage of New Orleans’ climate and express its deep cultural heritage." Photo by John Williams Architects.
Project: Special No. 9 HouseLocation: New Orleans, LouisianaView: Rendering, exteriorArchitect:KieranTimberlakeRendering by KieranTimberlake.
Project: Special No. 9 HouseLocation: New Orleans, LouisianaView: InteriorArchitect:KieranTimberlakePhoto by Momenta Workshops/Alexi Lebedev.
Project: City of Watsonville Water Resources CenterLocation: Watsonville, CaliforniaView: ExteriorArchitect:WRNS StudioAIA summary: "The Water Resources Center is a functional, educational and visual extension of the water recycling plant it supports. The new 16,000 square foot building consolidates three different city and county water departments into a workspace that allows for thoughtful and continuous collaboration on issues of water management, conservation and quality in the Pajaro Valley. The facility includes administrative offices, a water quality lab, educational space and a design that puts the story of water in California on display. The building, its systems and its landscape will serve to educate the public through exhibition and guided tours." Photo by Bruce Damonte. Courtesy of Bruce Damonte.
Project: City of Watsonville Water Resources CenterLocation: Watsonville, CaliforniaView: Offices Architect:WRNS StudioPhoto by Bruce Damonte. Courtesy of Bruce Damonte.
Project: City of Watsonville Water Resources CenterLocation: Watsonville, CaliforniaView: LabsArchitect:WRNS StudioPhoto by Bruce Damonte. Courtesy of Bruce Damonte.
Project: 355 11th Street, Matarozzi/Pelsinger BuildingLocation: San Francisco, CaliforniaView: Exterior Architect:Aidlin Darling DesignAIA summary: "355 Eleventh is a LEED-NC Gold adaptive reuse of a Historic (and previously derelict) turn-of the-century industrial building. Because the project site is on the National Register of Historic Places, the San Francisco Planning Department mandated that the project’s new siding be an “in-kind” replacement of the original (unsalvageable) corrugated metal siding and that the overall window area be consistent between old and new. The design team successfully championed a strategy of introducing subtle perforations into the new zinc cladding to allow light and air into the occupied spaces beyond, maintaining the stoic character of the original building without the visual introduction of new fenestration." Photo by Matthew Millman.
Project: 355 11th Street, Matarozzi/Pelsinger BuildingLocation: San Francisco, CaliforniaView: Exterior at nightArchitect:Aidlin Darling DesignPhoto by Matthew Millman.
Project: 355 11th Street, Matarozzi/Pelsinger BuildingLocation: San Francisco, CaliforniaView: InteriorArchitect:Aidlin Darling DesignPhoto by Richard Barnes.
Project: Twelve|WestLocation: Portland, OregonView: Exterior, roof with turbinesArchitect:Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Architects LLPAIA summary: "Rising 23 stories above the intersection of Twelfth and Washington streets in Southwest Portland, Twelve|West is a mixed-use building designed with sustainability and ongoing learning as integral goals. Twelve|West was designed to achieve the highest levels of urban sustainability, and is expected to earn a Platinum rating under LEED NC overall and LEED CI for the office floors. An emphasis was put on selecting low-impact materials, including salvage, reclaimed and FSC-certified wood. Much of the concrete building structure is exposed on the interior minimizing the use of finish material and providing ample thermal mass. Energy use reduction was a primary driver of the design. Simulations predict energy savings of 45% over a baseline code building." Photo courtesy Zimmer Gunsul Fransca Architects LLP.