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Media inquiries: Please contact Julie Buchanan, julie.buchanan@dcr.virginia.gov, 804-786-2292.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: December 23, 2009
Contact: Jim Meisner Jr., DCR Public Relations Specialist, (804) 786-8442, jim.meisner@dcr.virginia.gov

Sailor's Creek Battlefield Visitor Center receives environmental certification

RICHMOND - A new visitor center at Sailor's Creek Battlefield Historical State Park has received LEED Silver certification for its use of environmental sensitive practices and materials during its construction. This is the second visitor center constructed by the Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation to receive the coveted LEED certification and the first to reach the Silver level.

LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. The U.S. Green Building Council, a nationwide non profit organization "committed to a prosperous and sustainable future for our nation through cost-efficient and energy-saving green buildings," developed and coordinates the LEED rating system.

"Our LEED buildings, such as the visitor center at Sailor's Creek, highlight the Commonwealth's commitment to conserving our natural resources," said DCR Director Joseph H. Maroon. "Building them in our state parks also allows us to share the important conservation message with our visitors."

The LEED Silver certification cites 34 distinct actions. They fall under five broad categories: sustainable site design and development, water efficiency, energy and atmosphere, materials and resources and indoor environmental quality. These included:

  • Using porous pavers in the parking lot to reduce polluted runoff and erosion.
  • A special finish on the metal roof to reflect the suns heat.
    30 percent water use reduction from use of low flow fixtures and lavatory aerators.
  • High efficiency heat pumps; motion sensor on light fixtures to reduce energy use.
  • High performance solar-control glass to reduce summer heat while providing maximum light.

In addition, more than 20 percent of the materials used in the building are from recycled materials and more than 50 percent were manufactured locally reducing the use of fuels for transportation. The visitor center's main counter is constructed of bamboo, a rapidly renewable resource.

Signs throughout the center explain various "green efforts."

"This building, and interpreting the many features that make it special, are key to ourpark's conservation and educational missions," said DCR State Parks Director Joe Elton. "Hopefully this will help raise awareness for generations to come, and give homeowners a few ideas of green practices they can use at home."

The Wilderness Road State Park visitor center in Lee County, which opened in 2004, was the first Virginia State Park building to receive LEED certification. The visitor center at Smith Mountain Lake State Park in Bedford County recently completed the certification process. Visitor centers at Westmoreland (Montross), James River (Buckingham County), Andy Guest Shenandoah River (Warren County) and First Landing (Virginia Beach) state parks are under construction using LEED techniques and DCR will seek certification for them.

Sailor's Creek Battlefield Historical State Park is in Amelia, Nottaway and Prince Edward counties.

For information on DCR and the Virginia State Parks, go to www.dcr.virginia.gov .

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