Expanded museum sets standard for green building in Anchorage
The Anchorage Museum is pursuing Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification for its 80,000-square-foot expansion. The LEED Green Building Rating System promotes sustainability by recognizing performance in five key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality.
The certification would make the Anchorage Museum the municipality’s first LEED-certified building.
This achievement will be particularly significant in a city that just started offering curbside recycling in fall 2008. A LEED certification would be a major milestone in the city’s initiative, started by former Mayor Mark Begich in 2005, to become greener.
Environmentally friendly elements of the museum expansion:
- Minimizes the building footprint by creating four levels plus a basement, and maximizes the planted landscape and green space
- Uses recycled content building materials whenever possible
- Uses locally produced materials whenever possible, including concrete aggregate and landscape supplies
- Provides an air quality management plan during and after construction to flush out contaminants before occupancy
- Allows employees to control their work area light levels, resulting in energy cost savings and higher productivity
- Offers increased energy performance resulting from extensive testing of the building “skin” and HVAC systems
- Encourages use of alternative transportation, providing easy access for pedestrians and public transportation users, convenient bike racks, and staff showers and changing rooms
- Aims for a 20 percent reduction in water use through the use of low-flow or automatic plumbing fixtures
- Promotes recycling by providing local and central collection areas
LEED certification won't be determined until construction is complete in summer 2010.