National Children's Museum LEED Design


On Earth Day, the National Children's Museum unveiled plans for a new building designed by Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects.  If all goes as planned, the building will obtain LEED certification and open in 2013.  The design reflects the Museum's mission to inspire children to care about and improve the world.  NCM's new, 150,000 square-foot facility will be built at National Harbor with some of the following green features:


  • Wind turbine – a fanciful wind turbine will generate on-site green energy for the future LEED building;
  • Sun reflectors – a number of reflective panels on the roof will deflect sunlight, minimize artificial lighting, and reduce daytime energy loads;
  • Living wall – the south-facing facade will incorporate a cable and tray system to support a framework for the huge living, green wall;
  • Green roof – a green roof will absorb rainwater, improve thermal insulation, and reduce heat island effect; and
  • Recycled materials – the new building will use recycled steel and brick from demolished buildings. 

Speaking of the design, Cesar Pelli, Senior Principal at Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects, said: "Areas of the structure vary in shape and size to create a ‘village of forms’ that provides great architectural scale and experiential variety to the visitor, along with intuitive wayfinding and seamless interaction between exhibits, programs, and activities.  In all aspects, the design seeks to encourage and inspire children to think about their role in the community and the world."



Rendering credits: Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects.

  • Portland Real Estate

    That looks huge, and very cool. Next stop is a green building the size of Mall of America or something with its own fully functional ecosystems. Cant wait to see the next step

  • Christopher

    Gee, it’s too bad they are building it at National Harbor, which is outside the DC Beltway and has no viable mass transit access. Not particularly green if everyone has to drive there. If they had built it in DC proper or a transit-accessible inner suburbs, it might have further taught kids about responsible development, rather than imbuing them with a “wow, new whiz-bang technologies!” that — no matter how much hype and greenwashing is involved — are not a viable solution to the environmental and energy crisis we face.

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