Trails and Trees Environmental Center
Crabtree Rohrbaugh & Associates worked with the Mechanicsburg Wildcat Foundation and Mechanicsburg Area School District on the design for the Trails and Trees Environmental Center Phase II.
Envisioned as a building that teaches students about sustainable design practices, the current design includes recreation offices for the school district and two enclosed multi-purpose science classrooms.
Oriented on the site to compliment the existing teaching pavilion, the building takes advantage of natural daylighting and views to reduce the energy consumption for lighting.
The south facade of the building incorporates doors for daylighting that can be opened to allow students to work more directly with the nature center. These doors along with operable clerestory windows allows for natural ventilation within the building. The south facade incorporates a porch and sunshading to control glare from daylight within the building.
Materials selection both interior and exterior are based upon life cycle cost, recycled content, durability, maintenance, low V.O.C. content and local production to reduce transportation costs and environmental impact.
Ground source heat pump is utilized as a heating and air conditioning system along with solar power. These systems in concert with increased thermal insulation and high efficiency windows reduce the overall energy consumption of the building.