Irving ISD administrators and project designers are planning a “net-zero” concept for the new Lady Bird Johnson Middle School in Irving, Texas. When complete, it will be the nation’s largest net-zero middle school and will seek LEED-gold certification. A net-zero energy building is one that produces as much energy as it consumes. Through efficiency technologies and on-site power generation, the use of renewable energies allows the building to produce as much energy as it consumes from the electric grid.

The new Lady Bird Johnson Middle School is designed to be a net-zero school for Irving ISD. Image: Charter Builders/Corgan Assoc/IISD.
Image: Charter Builders/Corgan Assoc/IISD.
The new Lady Bird Johnson Middle School is designed to be a net-zero school for Irving ISD.
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Dallas-based Charter Builders, a Balfour Beatty company, was awarded the $29-million contract to manage construction of the 150,000-sq-ft facility, which will produce its own energy via solar panels, geothermal energy harvesting, and wind turbines. If the school produces excess energy, the district could sell energy to a local electric provider, creating a potential revenue source for the district.

Scheduled to open to students in August 2011, the building has a goal of serving as a learning space, educating students about geothermal science, rainwater collection, solar-panel usage and wind-turbine efficiency.

Dallas-based Corgan Associates Inc. is the architect and Walnut, Calif.,-based IEG Engineers is consulting on the project.