While perusing a periodical recently we became aware of an interesting project in Las Vegas, Nevada known as the Springs Preserve. The complex consists of the Origen Experience, Desert Living Center, Gardens/Trails and the Nevada State Museum. The Desert Living Center is of particular interest as it was designed with the intent of gaining LEED Platinum Certification.
The center was designed by Lucchesi, Galati Architects Inc. and incorporates the following elements in order to obtain the platinum certification:
- Rammed-earth walls utilizing local materials
- Window design maximizing natural daylight use
- Recycled materials minimizing new resource demand
- Passive cooling and renewable heating of buildings
- Reclaimed water to reduce tap water needs
- Electrical energy created by solar array panels
The building consists of three zones, the Sustainability Gallery, the Inside Out Gallery and the Design Lab & Dialogue Center. The Sustainability Gallery focuses on various aspects of sustainability while the Inside Out Gallery peels back the inner structure of the building itself to reveal and teach the fundamentals of green buildings. The Lab focuses more on academic and research endeavors as they relate to the environment.