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Tracy Aviary Visitors Center Achieves Leed Gold Certification

Published: 08/07/2012 -- Tracy Aviary recently received LEED Gold certification on its new Visitors Center. This is Tracy Aviary’s second LEED Gold building and adds to the organization’s portfolio of environmentally sensitive practices.

The Visitors Center, which was completed by Big-D Construction and ajc architects through the design-build process, opened to the public in December of 2011.

Many sustainable features have been incorporated into the development of this building, including:

  • Bird safe building featuring 3 different window treatments that reduce bird strikes and resulting injury/mortality
  • Pre-cleansing and retention of roof storm water through the use of retention and detention ponds
  • Using 20 percent less water than a building of comparable size and function
  • Using Forest Stewardship Council certified woods for 95 percent of the wood that was used
  • Incorporating more than 20 percent recycled content in the materials used for the construction of building and site work
  • Providing more than 13 percent of the building’s electrical needs through rooftop photovoltaic panels
  • Diverting more than 60 percent of construction related waste from landfills for other uses
  • Incorporating multiple measures to improve the environment­­al health of the building for occupants, including the use of air filters, improved ventilation and air quality monitoring, no harmful construction chemicals, etc.

The new Visitors Center aims to support the experiential, educational and sustainability mission of Tracy Aviary. But this landmark project is not, of course, the end of the Tracy Aviary story that began when Salt Lake City banker Russell Lord Tracy donated his private bird collection to Salt Lake City and its children in 1938.   

The ongoing and unprecedented transformation continues with several projects that have been constructed in the past few years, and several more on the docket.

The Tracy Aviary currently maintains a collection of approximately 400 birds representing about 135 species, and many of these birds are considered rare or endangered.

Exhibits represent different bird habitats found north and south along the Western Hemispheric Flyway – the migratory route used by bird species that frequent the Great Salt Lake and other Utah landscapes.