Group2 was thrilled to attend the Grand Opening of the Helen Schuler Nature Centre located in the coulees of Lethbridge, Alberta. This was an innovative project for our company as our experience with LEED projects has given us the ability to fully integrate sustainable design into Client developments.
This building is monumental to its community not only due to sustainable design initiatives but because of its honorary name. Helen Schuler, a local Lethbridge Environmentalist, was an instrumental force behind environmental education programs being incorporated into school curriculums. The renovation focused on expanding and modernizing the building to include a large rooftop patio, an intensive green roof and a natural landscape. The Design Intent was to showcase the surrounding natural landscapes (the coulees, the river and the prairie grasses) and to work to preserve the surroundings by minimizing construction impact, using native plant species and incorporating bio-swales and rain gardens to control rainwater flow.
Group2 Calgary’s Principal Architect, Stacy Christensen, was able to attend the Grand Opening on Friday, June 6th and was very pleased with the community outreach of this project:
“When a community invests in a centre such as this one, more meaningful experiences will be shared by all and that was our goal here; allow for sustainable design to showcase meaningful environmental learning experiences and promote projects like this in the future.”
The building itself will serve as a demonstration piece allowing visitors of the center to learn about efficient plumbing fixtures, green power, healthy building materials, electric vehicle charging stations and ways to incorporate them into their own homes. It will be a place to inform visitors about green roof design, prairie grass species and sustainably harvested wood, as they experience the vistas of the surrounding landscape. Along with the refurbished building comes the excitement of new program offerings. There are several family events happening this month and you can be a part of the action by checking out their website for more information.
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