Quinta Mazatlan is Leading the Way!
What is LEED?
The Leaders in Environmental and Energy Design (LEED) Certification ratings system was developed by the US Green Building Council in 2000 to provide independent verification of efficient and sustainable design, construction and maintenance practices. LEED Certification sets the standard for measuring “green” building. “Green” building refers to a design and construction process that provides for the well-being of building occupants, the community and the environment. The LEED Rating System assigns point values to several categories including sustainable site selection, water efficiency, energy use, materials and resources, indoor environmental quality, community linkages, awareness and education, innovation in design, and regional concerns. The number of points earned defines what LEED Certification designation the building will receive including CERTIFIED (40-49 points), SILVER (50-59 points), GOLD (60-79 points) and PLATINUM (80 points and above).Quinta Mazatlan hasachieveda SILVER certification!
LEED Measures achieved by Quinta Mazatlan's Discovery Center
Awareness and Education
- Staff are being trained to utilize the Discovery Center in the most efficient ways.
- The Discovery Center itself serves as a model of a whole-building approach to sustainability. Signage and a special tour will be used to educate visitors.
- The Discovery Center will be the new location of all children's programs.
Energy and Atmosphere
- Using infrared sensors, our lighting fixtures monitor movement and turn on only if someone is in the room. The building uses 60% less energy than a typical building.
- The south-facing walls are designed with plenty of windows. More natural light means less need for electrical lights.
- One third of the building has a wood-covered patio allowing for optimum natural light but blocking direct sun. The covered patio and interior curtains lower the temperature by as much as 20 degrees.
Indoor Environmental Quality
- Smoking is not allowed in the building or within 25 feet of entrances, keeping the air fresh.
- Our paints, tile grout, adhesives, sealants, flooring systems and composite wood have few or no harmful chemical compounds, promoting a healthy environment.
Innovation in Design
- The concrete roof tile lowers energy costs by reducing heat transfer through circulation under the tile and through concrete’s insulating properties.
- In 95% of the building, the visitor enjoys views of the great outdoors. Natural lighting is critical to the quality of student performance. Daylight is available, it’s free and it’s important for improved learning.
Locations and Linkages
- Bicycle parking racks encourage people to use cleaner transportation alternatives.
- Preferred parking for low-emission vehicles encourages their use and helps reduce pollution.
- Visitors can access Quinta Mazatlan using the McAllen Metro Bus Route 4.
Materials and Resources
- An average person produces 4.4 pounds of garbage a day for a total of 1,600 pounds a year! Please use the recycling containers and help eliminate the need for more landfills.
- The foundation floor is made of recycled aggregate (ground-up chunks of old concrete). We made good use out of waste material, keeping it out of the landfill!
- From within a 500-mile radius came our concrete, gypsum board, concrete roof tile, ceramic tile, Saltillo tile flooring and more. We supported local business and used less fossil fuel to transport materials.
- Steel is 100%recyclable. Our concrete floors are reinforced with recycled steel. Recycled steel reduces solid waste, resulting in saved landfill space and conservation of natural resources.
- We use organic pest control as a safe way to control those unwanted critters.
- Only earth-friendly cleaning practices are used.
- During construction, we recycled 75% of the waste from the project. Builders separated all waste into different piles for use on new projects. Examples: timber, concrete, cleared brush, steel, cardboard, drywall, plastic, paper.
- Our counter-tops may look like beautiful granite but they are in fact recycled surfaces made of 75% recycled content composted of porcelin, glass, mirror, stone scraps and a corn-based resin.
- The footprint of the “L” shaped building fits the northeast corner of the property, saving as much green space as possible. Plants cool the building area, improving air quality and scenic beauty.
- Light flush uses 25% less water than heavy flush. Help conserve our precious water resource.
- Our trails are made of “pervious” granite gravel, allowing water to go into the ground, reducing run-off, flooding, and erosion.
- This harvesting system collects rainwater from the roof and stores it. A small pump waters our plants with pure Texas rain water.
- Over 95% of our plants are native to the Rio Grande Valley—meaning they were here long before humans arrived. They are drought and heat resistant and provide food for wildlife.
- This area was covered with an invasive tree, the SALT CEDAR. The tree is native to the Middle East, Asia and Africa. A tree can drink up to 300 gallons of water a day, leaving entire areas dry. To address the problem, the trees were removed and over 40 different native species were planted.
- Our native plants require little irrigation water. They have evolved with temperature and rainfall extremes and require less water than exotic plants.
- Porous or permeable pavers have a solid surface for cars but allow natural drainage through spaces in between the pavers. The pavers allow water to seep into the ground preventing water runoff on the streets.