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Queens Botanical Gardens Celebrates Construction of Green Building – QNS.com

Queens Botanical Gardens Celebrates Construction of Green Building

The Queens Botanical Gardens in Flushing hosted a ground breaking ceremony this past Wednesday to kickoff the construction of the new environmentally advanced Visitor / Administration and Horticulture / Maintenance building.
The buildings innovative design was created to meet the highest standards of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), receiving the platinum rating from the US Green Building Council. LEED is a universally accepted framework for maintaining a stable ecosystem throughout the designing and constructing of a green building. The system was created to encourage developers to design environmentally-sound, resource-efficient buildings. The nearly 81 million commercial and residential buildings across the US already consume one third of our countrys natural energy and two thirds of all electricity used while creating enormous levels of pollution. The Green Building movement hopes to reverse that trend by offering builders incentives, training programs and project certification.
BKSK Architects, a Manhattan-based design firm, will head the $12 million project that will be funded by the city. It has been approved for additional funding from the NY State Energy Resource and Development Authority. BKSK partner and lead architect on the project Joan Krevlin said, "This project has been a great opportunity for us to work with a client who has the ambitious goal of expressing their environmental commitment through architecture."
The buildings design was chosen from over 50 entries from across the world, winning the 2004 New York City Green Building Design Award sponsored by the NYC and the US Department of Environmental Protection. Construction plans include the use of recycled building materials and a waste management plan designed to control the level of pollution caused by the development of this building. The buildings unique geothermal system will maintain and utilize the suns energy while creating its own electricity through light absorbing roof panels. The gray water conservation system will harvest rainwater from the planted green roofs and the surrounding wetlands while decreasing the need for heating and cooling. The plan includes a digital lighting control system that will monitor and regulate energy consumption.
The Queens Botanical Gardens hope the project will emphasize their commitment to environmental sustainability. Executive director Susan Lacerte said, "We have taken the next step in becoming the place where people, plants and cultures meet." The project will be completed by the fall of 2006.

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