Magazine article Parks & Recreation

North Boulder Recreation Center, Boulder, Colo.: Leave It Better Than You Found It

Magazine article Parks & Recreation

North Boulder Recreation Center, Boulder, Colo.: Leave It Better Than You Found It

Article excerpt

North Boulder Recreation Center was one of the first municipal recreation centers in the U.S. to go through the arduous process of being LEED-certified. The LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) standards encourage design and construction practices that reduce or eliminate the negative impact of buildings on the environment. Guidelines include sustainable site planning; safeguarding water and water efficiency; energy efficiency and an emphasis on renewable energy; conservation of materials and resources; indoor environmental quality; and innovation and design.

The center's renovation and expansion--from 31,000 square feet to 61,000 square feet--cost $11.5 million. The most significant LEED-related addition was a $265,000 solar water heating system (seen in the photo below). The system is thought to be the largest hydronic solar unit installed in the U.S. in the last 20 years, and is expected to reduce natural gas consumption by 50 percent.

Consistent with LEED standards, the center emphasizes other recycled and environmentally sustainable materials. …

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