LS3P’s Design of R2i2 Earns Two Globes Rating

Monday, October 31st, 2016

The new Richland Two Institute of Innovation, an educational center located behind the Village at Sandhills in Columbia, SC, has earned a Two Globes rating under the Green Building Initiative’s Green Globes Rating System. R2I2 was created by Richland County School District Two to support multigenerational learning, and was built as a design/build partnership between LS3P and MB Kahn Construction Co.  According to LS3P’s Principal-in-Charge, Mary Beth Sims Branham, AIA, “Richland School District Two’s leadership is to be applauded for their commitment to sustainability as it pertains to the impact their facilities have on the environment and for putting the health and well-being of their students, teachers, administration and community in the forefront of their decision making.”
The Two Globes rating recognizes the strategies for environmental sustainability which were a key part of the design. These strategies include high performance HVAC systems, water-conserving fixtures, recycled and local materials where possible, natural lighting and views, LED light sources, and low-e glass with sun shades. The facility also makes sustainability “visible” to students with a NEXT Lab classroom building showcasing renewable energy technologies such as fuel cells, and which is powered by its own photovoltaic array. R2I2’s main building contains a 936-panel rooftop photovoltaic solar array that can provide up to 285 Kw which transfers power back to the grid. In addition, the project includes a solar tree; windmill; electric car charging stations; 10,000 gallon fiberglass, underground cistern that will collect water for landscaping; and a solar hot water thermal system to pre-heat water for food service.
According to GBI, a Two Globes rating “demonstrates excellent progress in the reduction of environmental impacts and use of environmental efficiency practices.” The mixed-use R2I2 facility houses a public library, Richland School District Two offices, conference spaces, and educational spaces for both school and community use.