Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas’ new Bennett-Rathgeber Mentoring Center has won an Austin Energy Green Building 3-star energy award. The award honors community structures that support a cleaner environment through efficient water and energy use and that provide healthy, comfortable spaces for staff, clients or residents.
The new mentoring center is part of the Mueller Redevelopment, a LEED Gold Neighborhood Development certified by the U.S. Green Building Council. The eco-friendly building opened its doors on January 25, 2016. Although the mentoring center is four times larger than the agency’s former facility, it takes only twice as much energy to run. A number of innovative features reduce energy use. The facility’s core support spaces use natural light reducing the need for artificial lighting, and an energy-efficient HVAC system reduces the system’s run time.
Situated on a public bus route, the building offers easy public access without a car, reducing gas consumption and emissions.
The building design also supports increased physical activity and employee wellness. On the second floor, the Youth Activity Center provides a place for Bigs and their Little Brothers and Sisters to relax or play games. During the week, staff use the space to practice yoga.
Big Brothers Big Sisters is proud to be part of such a forward-thinking community that supports a cleaner, healthier environment. The site of a former municipal airport, Mueller offers a sense of community and multiple amenities. A blend of commercial and residential spaces, the Mueller neighborhood boasts parks, restaurants, a grocery store, apartments, and homes, all within walking distance.
Big Brothers Big Sisters’ new building aligns with the agency’s mission of creating brighter, healthier futures and outcomes for children. “Receiving this award is such an honor,” says Brent Fields, CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters. “We strive to maintain an eco-friendly and sustainable environment. It’s exciting to know that this energy efficient building is helping us to make an even greater difference in our community.”
An Austin Energy Green Building Sustainability Celebration will be held at 6 p.m. on November 14, 2017 at Big Brothers Big Sisters new Bennett-Rathgeber Mentoring Center on Manor Road.