• Government
  • Pahranagat National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center
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Pahranagat National Wildlife Refuge Visitor Center

The visitor center at the Pahranagat National Wildlife Refuge is an example of clean energy generation and use, achieving net-zero energy and LEED Silver accred­itation. The project team implemented conservation measures that included upgraded building insulation, daylight harvesting, and ground-source geo­thermal HVAC. On-site renewable energy is provided by roof-mounted solar photovoltaic panels.

The 5,000 sq. ft. facility is situated on a four-acre site and includes staff office space, visitor facilities, lobby, reception area, multipurpose room, exhibit room, and public restrooms. Exte­rior elements include parking for visitor buses/RVs, passenger cars, and staff vehicles. ADA-accessible trails provide access to the site’s amenities including a seasonal stream with associ­ated riparian area, vistas, and interpretive displays. The design incorporates aspects important to the Nuwuvi, or Southern Paiute peoples, such as an east-facing entry and banding to express the red-tailed hawk. Inspiration was sought from the cultural history of the area, the landscape, the forms, and the native wildlife. US­FWS was integral in the design process, pushing Cushing Terrell to create something as culturally relevant as possible.

Cushing Terrell involved all key members of the design team and ideas were evaluated for functionality, aesthetics, and performance. Energy modeling was used with early archi­tectural modeling to inform orientation and building massing as well as materials and systems. The result is a cost-effective, high-performance building exceeding performance goals. Af­ter a full year of operation, energy data showed the facility was well below net-zero energy consumption. The building pushed almost twice as much energy as it consumed back to the elec­trical grid over the 12-month time period.

US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS)

Alamo, NV

Civil Engineering
Electrical Engineering
Fire Protection
Mechanical Engineering
Forensic Engineering
Interior Design
Landscape Architecture
Site Design