The Innovation Center of the Rocky Mountain Institute, located in the town of Basalt, Colorado, is designed to stay true to the non-profit organization's stated mission to promoting sustainability.
This building is equipped with high-quality quad-pane glass that helps to trap thermal energy, while massive sunshades help moderate temperature and reduce glare. The structure also benefits from a durable envelope that means there is no need for pipes to be treated to be protected against freezing, another eco-friendly plus.
The windows themselves are high-performance quad-pane glass; two panes are simply films that help trap thermal energy. And large exterior sunshades which move according to data collected from weather sensors installed on the building are used to help moderate temperature and control glare. (Again, think of the skier metaphor—these are the goggles.)
One of the most interesting and eye-opening features of the Rocky Mountain Institute's brand new building is the fact that while it is possibly the most energy-efficient and eco-friendly building ever constructed in this particular sort of climate, it is still about nearly as big as typical commercial buildings in the USA. This fact goes a long way towards proving that energy-efficient buildings can be embraced more in the commercial sector, including in urban settings.