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Eastman Nature Center

Located within Elm Creek Park Reserve, Three Rivers Park District's largest park, this new nature center offers a stimulating learning environment that heightens the awareness of nature in a highly sustainable building.

The design integrates site, building, and exhibits in order to create a holistic visitor experience in the forest. A long southern facing glass facade brings in light, provides passive solar energy, and extends the exterior paths through the building from the understory on one end to the tree canopy on the other. An active solar array and a geothermal-based heating and cooling system provide much of the building’s energy needs. Operable windows provide ventilation and draw in the sounds and smells of the forest. Roof water feeds a pond to attract birds and animals for human observation.

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