Our Living Building Project

The Hitchcock Center for the Environment is taking the Living Building Challenge in the construction of its world-class 9,000 square foot environmental education center. Open to the public in the Fall of 2016, we aspire to be the first “living” environmental education center in New England after we complete the 12-month performance review process for full Living Building Certification conducted by the International Living Future Institute auditors.  We will need to meet 20 performance imperatives including net zero energy and water, use of nontoxic and locally sourced building materials, maintaining healthy indoor air quality, completing a one-time carbon offset for construction, meeting the habitat exchange requirement by placing an equal amount of land developed into a permanent conservation restriction, and much more.

Today, we call on the generosity of our community as we continue to fundraise those last critical dollars needed to successfully complete our $6.7M Building for the Future Campaign. This includes the $5.8M needed for our building and site and $900,000 needed to complete our audit and for essential outdoor learning spaces, state-of-the-art audio-visual and educational equipment, wheelchair accessible trails, and building system exhibits and displays including a Living Building digital dashboard.

Please help us create a powerful new learning center that will promote imagination, observation, and creative learning opportunities for people thirsting for more knowledge, greater connection to nature, and pathways to a more restorative relationship with nature.  Thank you.

For more information on how this magnificent new “building as educator” will deepen our environmental education programs for all ages, visit the links below.

Our Living Building Tour Program

Fall Tour Dates
Wednesdays at 12pm – September 14, 28, October 19, November 16
Fridays at 4pm – September 23, October 7, November 4, December 2
Come meet our newest educator – our building! It is designed to model systems in nature, it is net zero energy, net zero water, has composting toilets, and has been made with responsibly sourced non-toxic materials, come check it out at one of our bi-monthly tours. FREE but please register online.

Learn more about our project:


Living Building Challenge™ and related logo is a trademark owned by the International Living Future Institute™ and is used with permission.
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Hitchcock Center for the Environment