Austin Animal Center
Austin, Texas
LEED Certification: Gold

Austin Animal Center sought to replace their 50-year-old facility on a flood-prone site with a healthier 41,000 SF complex to serve 30,000 animals annually. Freestanding cat "columns" line the corridor leading from the lobby to the small-animal adoption wing, where a retail-like display of cats in glass-fronted cubicles lines the walls. When not on display, cats are free to roam in rooms connected to screened porches. Rabbits, guinea pigs and other small animals are displayed in a curved indoor area connected to a screened outdoor space. Custom-designed laminate furniture is whimsical but practical to clean. The 40 dog suites have furniture, and each suite connects to its own private backyard floored with artificial turf and shaded by the heritage trees and freestanding metal sunscreens. Designed for LEED Gold certification, the complex maximizes daylighting and includes solar collectors to heat the water for kennel washing; photovoltaic roof panels to power the building; mechanical systems projected to save 32% on energy use; and water-conserving fixtures and a special cleaning system that reduce water consumption by 35%; and reclaimed water for irrigation.

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