World’s Largest Recycled Building to Open In Berkeley | Home Design Find

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World’s Largest Recycled Building to Open In Berkeley

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Berkeley’s David Brower Center, a 50,000-square-foot building that opens this weekend is truly sustainably built; more than half of the construction is comprised of recycled materials, making this the worlds largest scavenged building.

The building is designed to be 40 percent more energy-efficient, using solar power both on the roof and incorporated into sun-shades on the South facade to moderate direct sun while harnessing sunshine for power.

“Recycled, repurposed, and reused goods infuse the walls, carpets, furniture, fixtures, plumbing, and other aspects of this four-story structure which is expected to receive a LEED Platinum rating, the highest certification, from the U.S. Green Building Council” according to The Scavenger.

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All the furnishings are made from salvaged wood. The ground-floor reception area is set into a grotto whose walls, in bands of varied browns, are a mixture of plaster and salvaged soils. The permanent art installation; “Earth Niche” is made by Marisha Farnsworth, whose company The Natural Builders specializes in construction using earth, cob, bamboo and salvaged straw.

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Among the amazing variety of tables and benches is a lustrously smooth black-acacia countertop created by Paul Discoe from Live Edge, a company that repurposes lumber from urban street trees that have been cut down due to storm damage, disease, and for other reasons.

Non-toxic fabrics and finishes are used throughout.

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Most amazingly, slag makes up 3/4 of the concrete used in the building. Slag is an unwanted byproduct of steel-smelting, that turns out to have fortifying properties and more importantly for sustainability in the long run; greatly reduces the CO2 produced in making cement.

A daylighting program employs zinc siding so that artificial lighting is not needed during daytime in many parts of the building. When artificial lighting is used, automatic controls balance use when daylight is adequate.

Windows that actually open and close (a rare sight in office buildings) and a low-pressure natural ventilation system created with a raised floor improve the indoor air quality.

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Radiant heating and cooling operate via tubes set into the concrete structural slabs.

An interactive real-time systems-monitoring dashboard will be mounted in the lobby, so passersby will be able to monitor (and marvel at!) the building’s energy consumption.

And hopefully, they’ll try this at home.

Via Anneli Rufus at Scavenging

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One comment so far to “World’s Largest Recycled Building to Open In Berkeley”
  1. Jumbo Jet is Recycled Into a Hotel | HomeDesignFind Says:

    […] all seen hundreds of recycled shipping containers being recommissioned as green sustainable recycled buildings. But with rising gas prices last summer, a lot of airlines were grounded, and far fewer now ply the […]

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