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The First Municipal Building Free and Open to the Public in the U.S. to Achieve The Living Building Certification

placeholder+imagePosted on: 05/09/2018

Photo by Alexander Denmarsh and Kent Suhrbier

The Frick Environmental Center has become the first municipal building free and open to the public in the U.S. and is currently one of 21 buildings in the world to achieve the prestiguous Living Building Challenge Certification. A joint venture between the City of Pittsburgh and the Pittsburgh Parks Conservancy (also suported by more than 600 donors), the Center serves as an experiential environmental eduction classroom and resource for the surrunding community.  Part of a 4-acre site with restored gatehouses and a fountain, parking, a barn and extensice landscaping which includes a sloping hill, walkway and bridge, the new 16,000 square foot building features a public living room and gallery, K-12 environmental education classrooms, offices and additional space for administration.  

Completed in 2016, the building had already earned a LEED Platinum designation.  In order to earn the the Living Building Challenge Certification, the building had to meet rigorous performance standards set by the International Living Future Institute, which include producing the same amount of energy it consumed, eliminating toxic materials and collecting and treating its own water. 


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