Irving ISD administrators and project designers are planning a “net-zero” concept for the new Lady Bird Johnson Middle School in Irving, Texas. When complete, it will be the nation’s largest net-zero middle school and will seek LEED-gold certification. A net-zero energy building is one that produces as much energy as it consumes. Through efficiency technologies and on-site power generation, the use of renewable energies allows the building to produce as much energy as it consumes from the electric grid.
Dallas-based Charter Builders, a Balfour Beatty company, was awarded the $29-million contract to manage construction of the 150,000-sq-ft facility, which will produce its own energy via solar panels, geothermal energy harvesting, and wind turbines. If the school produces excess energy, the district could sell energy to a local electric provider, creating a potential revenue source for the district.
Scheduled to open to students in August 2011, the building has a goal of serving as a learning space, educating students about geothermal science, rainwater collection, solar-panel usage and wind-turbine efficiency.
Dallas-based Corgan Associates Inc. is the architect and Walnut, Calif.,-based IEG Engineers is consulting on the project.