Hays Nature Preserve Interpretive Center


This 1,535 square foot wood framed building sits at the entrance to the City’s largest undeveloped park land, with office, display, classroom and restrooms to serve as orientation for visiting school groups. Registered as a LEED project and designed to the Silver level, it has many sustainable features.

The site uses pervious concrete, rain gardens and all indigenous plant materials to handle storm water and eliminate the need for irrigation. The roof is vegetated with native succulents to prevent heat build-up and filter storm water. All main spaces are day lit and have exterior views, and the building materials were selected for regional sourcing, recycled content and low toxic off-gassing. Efficiency and indoor air quality are also enhanced by a highly efficient HVAC system, and classroom lights are controlled by daylight sensors

The windows are massed principally on the south elevation with a generous roof overhang and light shelf/shade structure to control the solar gain and evenly distribute the light in the classroom. Other windows on the east side give views to the pond, next to which the building is sited. Windows on the north are minimized, and eliminated on the west. All walls have large overhangs to protect wood/cement composite siding. The building is sited to be expanded to the west, and for a dock onto the pond. 

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