Phipps Opens New Green Building

Michala McCullough, Editor-in-Chief

Phipps Botanical Garden in Oakland opened the newest edition to the “green” landscape Tuesday February 12. The Center for Sustainable Landscapes is the first building in the world to meet three different environmental standards : the Living Building Challenge, LEED® Platinum Standards and, Sustainable Sites Initiative SITES certification for landscapes.

To meet the environmental standards the building must have no net water or net energy annually.  The exterior of building is reclaimed wood from local barns. There are lagoons and water reclamation systems to help reuse water. The bottom floor contains classrooms for local colleges to use for research and the top floors contain offices for the administrative side of Phipps.

Throughout the whole building windows serve as the main source of lighting, with energy efficient electrical bulbs in place to use if the weather is bad.

The site also includes Revolutionary Energy Efficiency, an Integrative Design Process, Passive Solar Design, a Robust Building Envelope, Geothermal Heating and Cooling, a Rooftop Energy Recovery Unit, a Vertical Axis Wind Turbine and, a Natural Ventilation system.