City of Houston Green Building Resource Center

The City of Houston Green Building Resource Center is leading by example, proving sustainability can be both beautiful and attainable. This commercial interior renovation successfully achieved client goals in demonstrating a variety of sustainable options as well as increasing the general public’s awareness about the value of green design and was awarded LEED Gold for Commercial Interiors. The center not only functions as office space but includes a material resource library and conference setting for presentations and events. Intexure created innovative flexible design solutions to allow the center to do more with less real estate and adapt daily to changing needs. The conference room can be configured for a small meeting, or with sliding walls opened, expands to accommodate a large presentation. To host receptions and events, the recycling center rolls away, library louvers open, and displays move back to create one large open space. 

Set within an existing office building and planned for future relocation, components were designed for disassembly and relocation, meeting the client’s needs while raising awareness on issues of significant waste in commercial interior renovation and build-out driven by workplace churn and tenant lease changes. Intexure collaborated closely with the center’s director to select innovative and appropriate materials, integrate donations, and maintain a cohesive environment throughout the center. As a demonstration center, sustainability was the top priority throughout the project resulting in a LEED Gold for Commercial Interiors certification. The roof houses a system of solar arrays and rain water harvesting, collecting water off the roof and storing it in an above ground tank for landscape planter irrigation. 

The resource library contains innovative products and full scale wall sections demonstrating various construction techniques. Window and film mockups showcase energy minded solutions along with high efficiency fluorescent and LED lighting controlled by a daylight harvesting system.  With these features, the lighting power density was reduced 35% from the baseline standard. Raised under floor air and an exposed sock duct system demonstrate alternate methods of HVAC. A recycling center includes organized areas for the usual paper, plastic and aluminum along with thoughtful areas to keep batteries, electronics, and eyeglasses out of landfills. 

Materials include recycled content carpet, renewable cork, bamboo, recycled tire flooring, 100% recycled glass terrazzo, no-voc paint, formaldehyde free MDF, recycled coffee bag laminate, 100% post consumer milk bottle surfacing, and recycled sorghum straw board.  This innovative mix of materials contributed to the LEED Gold for Commerical Interiors rating.  In addition with construction recycling 94% of construction material was diverted from the landfill including carpet and ceiling tile. Reclaimed shiplap siding creates a unique entry soffit and demonstrates how salvaged materials can be given new life. Achieving this high efficiency design with limited budget and resources proves that sustainability can be achievable for everyone.