This morning I got a chance to visit with Shannon Cate, about the improvement being done along the Trinity River.
Planning and Development Manager
Tarleton State University, Stephenville, Texas, Bachelors of Business Administration Degree: Marketing Major (May, 2002)
Three bridges will span the bypass channel providing vehicles and pedestrians with access between Uptown and Northside neighborhoods.
1.5-mile-long bypass channel will be constructed to redirect flood waters around the low lying area to the north of downtown.
- Because the bypass channel will be carrying water so quickly in times of flooding, areas where water can be stored before moving downstream will be critical. This is where valley storage comes into play. Valley storage is constructed to hold various amounts of water for short periods of time while river levels regulate after a flood.
- Three flood gates will be installed at the portions of the river where the bypass channel and the original river intersect. These gates will remain open at most times, but can be shut during high water events – forcing water through the bypass channel.
- A dam will be put in place near Samuels Ave. keeping the upstream water at a constant level at all times. The dam will also have a channel lock component allowing boats to travel from Marine Creek in the Stockyards all the way to Trinity Park!
I got a chance to visit the Tarrant Reginal Water District, and unlike the last visit I got a chance to see their control room, while Laura discussed their coverage area.
Since I wasn’t busy taking pictures on this tour I heard some really interesting facts about their new facility:
- Waste Water is being recycled through a 200 acre wet land treatment system
- 1.47 Million Solar array (powers 50-70% of the buildings usage)
- Repaid in 16-18 years
- Since the water district is a govt. building it was important for them to look into long term improvements with little environmental impacts
- The control room is comprised of several monitors, constantly monitoring the counties lakes and public water usage
- Since water is becoming scares and expensive to move around the water district is working on ways of reducing costs to its community.
I appreciated that the Water District had created several indicatives to encourage it’s employees to practice sustainable working habits, that support environmental improvements.
A newer plan converted the building into lofts for sale and construction of a new low-rise apartment building to the east of the tower. The lofts opened in July of 2006. Commuter rail service started on December 3, 2001, serving as the western terminus of the Trinity Railway Express.
The Texas & Pacific Railroad merged with Missouri Pacific in 1963, and Mopac has long since been gobbled up by Union Pacific.
The station closed in 1967, when rail passenger service was taken over by Amtrak and relocated to a smaller station a few blocks away. Since then, the building has housed federal office space on the upper floors, but the lower levels have been mostly vacant.
Construction will cost about $50 million, and the developers are working on a public-private sector financing plan. Compared with building a new full-service hotel, the conversion of the historic railroad building is a bargain.
LEED Gold Certification
Some of its features:
- Largest roof top solar electric system in the state of Texas
- Solar panels provide 70 percent of the buildings energy as well as it’s surplus electricity
- Largest array of photovoltaic (electricity-generating) panels
- Sealed concrete flooring, cork flooring
- The lighting in the building operates with occupancy sensors
- Energy efficient heating/cooling system that continually cycles fresh air into the building
- Three 2,500-gallon cisterns to catch rainwater; a drip-irrigation system for landscaping featuring drought-resistant native vegetation
This location was the Grand Daddy of all the locations we have visited. This building was Eco-Friendly to the max, but I think what impressed me most was how the design and thought process took the workers/employees into consideration. This building was designed to improve the overall air quality. The location took into consideration the Trinity Rail System. They really considered the people who would spend the most time in the building. They added a special coating on glass windows, so that the windows could double as think pads or dry erase boards (reducing paper and STICKY NOTES). It felt like the designers had thought about every thing.
I am really starting to understand the impact of LEED Certified Structures.