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"Oregon Zoo’s New Veterinary Medical Center–Green Certified"

"Oregon Zoo’s New Veterinary Medical Center–Green Certified"

To reduce electrical costs, solar energy is used to heat the water and solar tube lighting is used to illuminate the facility with natural light.

Posted by Jordan Schaul of The Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center

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The President of the Green Chamber of CommerceElena Christopoulos, recently asked me what the zoo community does to promote green initiatives.

I couldn’t think of a better and more recent example than the Veterinary Medical Center at Portland’s Oregon Zoo.

The new animal health facility opened last month under budget and on time and features an array of “green” architectural features. The 15,500-square-foot, $9.15 million dollar hospital replaces a health care center less than half its size built in 1966.

Peck Smiley Ettlin Architects and Skanska USA designed and constructed the LEED silver certified building based on standards set by the U.S. Green Building Council. One “green” feature integrated into the highly efficient building design is a 27,000-gallon rainwater cistern which stores roof water intended for recycling.  The water is purified and used to flush toilets and even hose down animal patient enclosures and quarantine facilities.

To reduce electrical costs, solar energy is used to heat the water and solar tube lighting is used to illuminate the facility with natural light.

Building materials low in volatile organic compounds were selected for construction; foundation materials and cosmetic furnishings like carpet and tile, when possible were selected from recycled materials.  According to zoo communications personnel, the design and construction team exceeded their goal of recycling 90 percent of construction waste.

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