(SANTA FE, NM) - The Institute of American Indian Arts (IAIA) is showing its true color - green. The Institute recently certified two Gold and one Silver LEEDTM (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) buildings on its growing campus.
The achievement of the multiple LEED certifications is no small feat, but it aligns well with IAIA's objective to offer high quality educational programs on a sustainable campus. "It's a high performance building for a higher education campus," Myra Villalobos, LEED Accredited Professional at Dyron Murphy Architects, P.C. said.
It takes a lot of coordination and careful consideration to have a building LEED certified. Since the buildings are constantly in use, each building features smart design strategies to maximize energy efficiency and provide a comfortable working space for students and staff. "An educational facility creates a healthy environment for large groups of people," Dyron Murphy, the architect of the new buildings, said.
LEED is a standardized, point based rating system that determines how sustainable a building is. This system helps to determine building performance and is used as a guide for architects, engineers, and owners to meet sustainability goals. The architecture firm that designed the buildings, Dyron Murphy Architects, P.C., is a native-owned firm dedicated to sustainable design. They work closely with Native American entities throughout the United States to incorporate both LEED principles and native culture into their designs.
Since its establishment in 1962 as an institute for innovative artists and educators, IAIA has offered forward thinking approaches to Native American arts education. In 2000, the institute established its permanent location in Santa Fe, and has since constructed several new buildings. Recent LEED certified buildings include, the Center for Lifelong Education, Science and Technology, and Sculpture and Foundry building. This constitutes 60,000 square feet of new LEED certified art space. The most notable building is the Science and Technology building, featuring a state-of-the-art digital dome theater, new media labs, and conservation/science labs, along with the world-class Museum of Contemporary Native Arts' permanent collection.