News: A Green Center for Refuge Visitors in Jamaica Bay

In the New York Daily News yesterday:
A new $3.3 million visitor center for the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge opened last week after more than five years of design and construction. ...

Once certified, the building will be the first in the National Park Service's Northeast Region to meet a stringent standard for green buildings known as Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, or LEED, said Carol Whipple, the project manager.

- Eco-friendly Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge Opens, Rachel Monahan, New York Daily News
The 10,000 acres of the wildlife refuge provides an important stopover for migratory birds. In all, more than 330 species of birds call it home. ...

The lighting is 90% natural.

On a warm summer day, the breeze from open windows pulled upward by a wind turbine on the roof keeps the central hall plenty cool without air conditioning.

The building also maximizes the sun's rays in winter, including windows aligned for the sun's winter path and its warmth collected in a dark, heat-retaining floor. ...

Additionally, all the materials came from within 500 miles, including recycled redwood siding and easily renewable materials such as the bamboo and cork floors and the natural-fiber cabinets.

They also reused the old concrete structure on the site. The urinals are waterless, and the landscaping outside relies on native plants.

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