The Museum is proud to be the state’s first building to earn the Platinum Certification for green standards. From the wood floors, to the paint, to the outdoor landscaping, each feature of the building was carefully planned and designed. This month we will take a look at the Atrium.
The Atrium is the first thing you walk into when you enter our facility. Many things were reused from the original structure to complete the look. This area serves many functions in our operations, such as the entrance for all guests and visitors, cooking classes, small group projects, and event bar service.
Crates and pallets were reused in the architecture of the building to create a rustic look (while environmentally friendly). They are used as the pillar surroundings and the backsplash in the kitchen area.
Many areas of the building were painted white, including the stone and wood pillars and beams. In order to restore the original look and texture, the building was sandblasted.
Wheat cabinetry is used in various areas of the Museum, including the kitchen. Instead of cutting down trees to make furniture, our cabinets were created out of leftover wheat straw. How? After a harvest, the stalk and other leftover particles are compressed and made into wheat cabinetry.
Large skylights and windows provide the Museum with ample natural sunlight. This helps keeps the Museum’s energy bill low by not needing to turn on lights as often.
Many areas of the Museum, including the atrium and bathrooms, have motion centered lighting. In addition to security, motion censored lighting helps conserve energy in our facility by only turning on when the space is in use.
Many of the features in the bathroom are motion censored, including the toilets, sinks, and hand dryers. This is energy efficient and water efficient because the fixtures only run when they need to and shut off when they are not in use. The sink sensor runs on a battery that recharges as water flows (a turbine is spun to recharge the power source for the sensor). All of the fixtures in the bathroom are low flow to prevent over usage of water needed.
The flooring in the atrium is a high polished concrete. It is very durable and very easy to maintain. The texture and look of the concrete gives it a “marble floor” feeling, while no buffing or chemicals are needed to maintain the flooring’s beauty.
The rug in the Museum’s entry is not only green in color, but is also made out of green materials. The bottom of the rug is made of 15% recycled tires and the top is made out of recycled pop bottles.
The abandoned, circa-1914 display case was donated by the Gorley family in 2009. It holds the building’s original burglar alarm and fire equipment, plus old Standard Oil Company oil and gas cans.
The Standard Oil Company occupied the building in the early 1900’s. The building to the north west of ours, which now houses an advertising firm, was previously a garage and was renovated a couple years before the Museum. At that time, the plumbing company started work in the old garage and was drilling into the floor. When the drill bit came back up, they expected to find dirt. When no dirt came back through the hole they decided to cut out a chunk of the concrete where they found a basement unexposed to sunlight for years. They found all of the original signs from the old Standard Oil Building. The company put most of the signs up for auction and the Museum actually had to buy back these original signs.
One other notable green feature in the Atrium includes low VOC (Volatile Organic Chemical) paint.
Next month we will look at the green features of the Main Hall, our most used and most popular area.