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Green Building and Design in Arizona

Nov 27, 2020 07:35AM ● By Michael Krause

GrowHaus 2.0

Green building is the practice of creating a building that in both construction and design is resource-efficient and environmentally responsible. This paves the way for sustainable health and wellness opportunities for individuals and communities, education and security—environmental, food and economic—and creates value and resilience for investors. Net positive approaches; ecological restoration; and building reuse, repositioning and revitalization are at the helm of the future of green building.

The Rio Salado Project

With a wide variety of standards, tools and programs to consider, the Environmental Protection Agency announced the Rio Reimagined–Rio Salado Project as the 20th member of The Urban Waters Federal Partnership designation this summer. Michael Krause—the winner of the American Institute of Architects International Ideas Competition for the Rio Reimagined 2018 and partner at Krause – Architecture + Interiors—describes the Rio Salado venture as “bringing education and food security to a historically depressed and disused area of Phoenix (a food desert). The concept also recommends sustainable ways to fix a once perennial river that has been forgotten since the Hohokam Indians disappeared from the valley.”

GrowHaus 2.0 is a remarkable ideation from Krause for the Rio project that comprises an education and resource center with interactive and socially engaging educational programs for the community, rotational hydroponics vertical farming, and aquaponics farming using recycled grey water. The project aspires to give access to education, training and employment; focus on social equity and integrative planning; be “water positive”; and signal a new identity with heightened expectations for the metro region by fostering climate adaptation and urban resilience.

Building Reuse and Revitalization

Repositioning of any building is a step to add to the property’s current value, and as opposed to ground-up construction costs, building reuse capitalizes on reduced development costs. In a growing market for green building, the value of repositioning is realized in integrating sustainability to reduce long-term operating costs.

Elevate 24 is premier workspace with LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certified office buildings in the heart of the Phoenix financial district. The Krause firm provided the design solutions for this Class A building by optimizing building space and specifying materials and systems that simplify and reduce maintenance requirements—require less water, energy, toxic chemicals or cleaners, and provide appropriate ventilation and moisture control. Sustainable buildings also enhance the indoor environmental qualities by maximizing daylight, optimizing acoustic performance, and avoid the use of materials with high-VOC (volatile organic compound) emissions.

Sustainable Architecture and Engineering

Optimizing the potential of various sites, energy use, and the protection and conservation of water are at the heart of and intrinsically what green building is. Projects like Elevate 24 and the Rio Reimagined provide tenants, investors and communities with sustainable solutions for years to come with optimized planning, and ecological restoration and landfill remediation by utilizing afforestation and low-water use farming. With a market in growing demand of energy efficiency enhanced by sustainable architecture and engineering, it is exciting news to see these developments come to fruition with positive and direct impacts on our environment, society and economy.

Michael Krause (Firm Partner, Senior Designer) joined the firm in 2017 after having worked for eight years in Denver, Colorado and Shanghai China, where he was an integral part of many high-profile national and international projects. (More Info: ).