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Iowa City East Side Recycling and Education Center

Located in Iowa City, IA

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The City of Iowa City desired a campus of sustainably designed buildings that consolidated recycling and landfill diversion programs to one location. The City wanted to lead by example and provide a solution that achieved the highest sustainability rating determined by the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED rating system. Shive-Hattery was hired to perform a site study and create a design for this proposed facility by the City, working closely with public and private entities to develop a concept.

The facility is designed to display sustainable construction strategies in harmony with the surrounding landscape. Natural materials blend seamlessly with manufactured elements, linking the interior space with its surroundings. The East Side Recycling Center complex includes an Education Center, a salvage barn, an oil drop site, wood chip and compost pick-up and electronic waste drop off site. The Education Center hovers over the adjacent bioswales, treading lightly on the site. Other environmental best practices evidenced by the project include storm water management, encouraging native vegetation, and installing pervious pavers and geothermal heating.

This completed project allows the City of Iowa City to be a leader in promoting sustainable practices while creating a beautiful, multi-use public facility. The Education Center itself enables public education opportunities and general awareness of sustainability. The project is in fact a statewide case study in sustainable design. This project achieved LEED Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council (their highest rating) and won a Grand Place Award (1st Place in Category) for sustainable design in the Buildings and Systems Category of the 2012 Engineering Excellence Awards Competition awarded by the American Council of Engineering Companies.

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