A research laboratory designed by Craig Gaulden Davis has established a new energy and environmental standard for the United States Forest Service. Mark McDonough, Assistant Station Engineer at the Forest Service’s Southern Research Station in Asheville, announced this weekend that its new Savannah River Forestry Sciences Laboratory has qualified certification through the US Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) “green” rating system and is pursuing Silver Certification. McDonough went on to say that the project is the first LEED-certified building for the Forest Service.
The LEED Green Building Rating System has become a nationally accepted benchmark for the design, construction, and operation of high performance green buildings. The US Green Building Council (USGBC) is a nonprofit organization that advocates environmentally and socially responsible methods in design and construction.
The new 3,800 square foot structure contains laboratories and offices. It was located to preserve existing vegetation, reduce site grading, and simplify stormwater management. Use of natural vegetation eliminated irrigation. Recycled metal and certified wood limit waste and reduce reliance on new materials. Careful design and installation of mechanical systems reduce energy needs. Natural light, views, and light controls allow occupants views to the exterior and control of the interior environment.