NEISD opens first ‘green’ school, largest in San Antonio
Cibolo Green, a model for energy and environmental design
July 14, 2010 – On Monday, August 23, 790 students will pour into Cibolo Green Elementary School, North East ISD’s first ‘green’ campus. Cibolo Green is part of the 2007 Bond Package. The 122,634 sq. ft. campus will include all the necessities of a standard elementary school, such as 45 classrooms with workrooms and book storage, a computer lab, pull-out classrooms, library and media center, two gyms and more. However, the manner in which these components have been incorporated into the construction is how the campus earned its ‘green’ title.
Recycled material was used in the design elements. For example, recycled glass tiles line halls and drinking fountain areas. Windows allow for natural lighting and a reduction of energy usage. Green design incorporates local/regional materials into the building structure. To support this, Cibolo Green used natural Texas sedimentary rock. In fact, special limestone called Cordova Shell that showcases marine fossils from the ancient Texas seas was selected as both an architectural element and a learning tool.
Each grade level covers an environmental design feature. Kindergarten is home to Site Sustainability, first grade is Indoor Environmental Quality, second grade is Materials and Resources, third grade is Water Efficiency, fourth grade is Energy and Atmosphere, and fifth grade is Design and Innovation. Each grade level is distinguished by the education material presented, unique color schemes and particular construction design elements. For example, in the kindergarten wing, a section of wall is left unfinished—covered with glass—so students can view the insulation and pipes used. Teachers will also incorporate environmental curriculum, such as Project Wild, into their instruction.
Upon construction completion, Cibolo Green will apply to become certified under the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) program. The U.S. Green Building Council, a non-profit, is composed of leaders from every sector of the building industry. These leaders work to promote buildings and communities that are environmentally responsible, profitable and healthy places to live and work. The LEED® Rating System is the national benchmark for the design, construction, and operation of high performance green buildings.
Posted on July 21, 2010