By Lori Walewski and Shannon Walz
Living Building Challenge believes that beauty inspires caring for communities and the environment. The Beauty Petal challenges LBC projects to recalibrate what people accept for the built environment. The purpose is to create joy and inspiration.
There are two imperatives – 1) Beauty and Spirit and 2) Inspiration and Education. The Imperative of Beauty and Spirit is simply to delight and celebrate life. The design of the project should include elements that the culture and spirit of the place. Wolf Ridge’s project has playful design elements scattered throughout the dorm as well as windows with views designed to inspire connection to the natural world and inspire with beautiful vistas.
The Inspiration and Education imperative is especially exciting to Wolf Ridge. This Imperative requires that Wolf Ridge educate others about the construction, operation, and performance of our building and open our facility to the public at least one day per year. We are intentionally designing educational monitoring equipment into the bedrooms as well as the common space. These monitors will record energy usage, water usage and heat consumption in each room and share aggregate the data out in the common space so that within the building students can compare between rooms. We are also going to make this monitoring information available via the internet so schools can access it in their classrooms when they return home.
We are already beginning to educate about the project. Wolf Ridge also has the unique opportunity to educate the building industry from architects and contractors to the manufacturing companies we are purchasing our materials from. The project is having ripple effects around the region as people involved with the project start to share our story. In addition, we are doing tours of the first phase of our project for the adults who visit with groups. In phase two of the project we are going to provide students the opportunity to engage with the building process.
Building Process Update
On the Naturalist House the exterior is complete except for small sections by the decks and awnings. Interior drywall and mudding continues. The last shipment of drywall necessary came in this week. We are also starting to look toward the smaller details ordering couches and making plans for building the beds in the rooms.
In the Maintenance building, the electricians completed the work on the lighting. The kinks in the heating system for the building are being worked out.