Queens Botanical Garden - Where people, plants, and cultures meet

Climate change and rising energy costs make it very important to reduce energy consumption. The Garden’s new buildings reduce energy use through innovative design, age-old methods, and cutting-edge technology.


Installing rooftop photovoltaic panels.
Image credit: Max Joel

The Visitor & Administration Building’s orientation and long, narrow architecture allow 90% of the interior space to receive daylight and maximize natural ventilation. A geothermal system uses the earth’s constant temperature to provide seasonal heating and cooling. Rooftop photovoltaic cells transform sunlight into electricity to operate high efficiency ventilation and lighting systems.

In the Horticulture/Maintenance Building, translucent siding allows daylight to reach interior workspaces, reducing the need for electrical lighting.

Overall, the Visitor & Administration Building will use approximately 40% less energy from nonrenewable sources than a typical building of its size. Every year this will prevent the release of over forty tons of the greenhouse gas CO2 into the atmosphere, the equivalent of removing nine cars from the road. Annual energy costs will be reduced by over $7,000, a savings passed on to New York City taxpayers.

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