The Grand Rapids Art Museum is the first LEED Gold certified museum in the country. This achievement is especially notable for art museums, given the precise climate standards required for preservation of the art and the sheer number of visitors these buildings have.
- The three-story, concrete-and-glass structure is organized around a 5,000-square-foot central pavilion, flanked by a reflecting pool and pocket park, open-air sculpture courtyard and dining terraces.
- To achieve LEED Gold, the project incorporated energy-efficient lighting, heating, ventilation and A/C systems and strict recycling systems for the water and operational supplies.
- The innovative skylight lanterns of the three gallery wings admit natural light into the space and illuminate the building at night, saving energy and cutting costs for the museum.
- Throughout the museum, a thin layer of argon gas between the layers of glass refracts a portion of light from the interior, protecting the art from too much light. In addition to galleries, the museum includes a multi-use auditorium, education center, art reference library, café and conference rooms to ensure the entire community can enjoy this innovative space.