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Dec 1, 2010 8:53 PM by Dr. Anya Winslow

$750,000 in federal grant money helps fund Springs eco-friendly library

For one Colorado Springs library, going green was made a little easier with a whole lot of green from the Federal Government and some other local funding sources.

Funding came from a $750,000 federal grant, as well as a $500,000 grant from the Department of Local Affairs. The entire project, including the furnishings, cost about $3 million dollars.

An eco-friendly design was the basis for the High Prairie Library in Falcon. From the energy efficient windows, all the way down to the glue in the carpet, almost all of the materials are environmentally-friendly.

Beetle-killed pine wood lines the interior of the building and several furniture pieces were forged from recycled plastic or sustainable materials.

Even the landscaping is environmentally friendly. "All our landscaping outside is xeriscape," says the library's manager Julianne Rist.

"The only thing we will be watering will be trees and shrubs once the grass-seed is established. It won't need any watering at all. It will survive on natural rainfall," adds Rist.

The smart design of the building even allows for the building's temperature to be self-regulating.

"Passive things in the building, such as the vents in the clearstory, which will open and close automatically based on the temperature," allow for the building to maintain a certain temperature without having to run the heating and cooling systems.

Overall, the library's design will leave a minimal carbon footprint and the community now has a full-service library in the neighborhood.

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