The Perot Museum of Nature and Science in Texas has secured the highest possible Green Globes rating from the Green Building Initiative for its new urban-inspired building.
This level of green achievement is a rarity in the US building industry, with only 12 out of 759 certified buildings having reached four globe certification.
The not-for-profit museum achieved an overall rating of 85 per cent on the Green Globes rating scale and 100 per cent for the site’s design and its sustainable performance measures.
Green Globes is a nationally recognised green building guidance and assessment program in the US. Its rigorous assessment is also the most closely aligned certification to federal building requirements in the US.
“Having assessed dozens of Green Globes applicants over the past five years, this facility scored the highest,” said Green Globes assessor Eric Truelove.
The six-storey, 180 square foot Perot museum cost $185 million to develop, and designers were tasked with a design brief to create a space that supported the museum’s mission “to inspire minds through nature and science.”
“The Perot Museum of Nature and Science was designed and built using green building practices so that it might serve as a model of sustainability and inspire the hundreds of thousands of schoolchildren, families and adults who visit each year,” said Perot Museum CEO Nicole G. Small.
The building design echoes Morphosis’ signature layering and fluid architectural techniques, creating a detailed and unconventional form.
The building itself resembles a cube structure that floats above a plinth with a stone roof featuring a landscape of drought-tolerant greenery inspired by its Texas surroundings.
Its most remarkable feature is a 54-foot continuous flow escalator housed within a 150-foot glass casing that extends diagonally outside the building cube.
Inside, 80 per cent of the building space is open to the public, and the museum boasts 10 galleries, a cinema, an auditorium, a café and retail and office space. The open plan design blurs the boundaries of exterior and interior spaces, emphasising the connection between nature and architecture.
Built to maximise sustainability, the building also features a rainwater collection system, LED lighting, off-grid energy generation technology and solar-powered water heating. Skylights have been installed to draw natural sunlight to the atrium and throughout the other spaces.
The Perot Museum has reshaped and redefined design opportunities and continues to gain global recognition for its sustainable efforts. Located in Victory Park, near downtown Dallas, it opened its doors to the public late last year.