By SCOTT MERZBACH Daily Hampshire Gazette
AMHERST — An advanced water system to be installed at the new Hitchcock Center for the Environment building under construction on West Street will be supported by a $50,000 grant from the Rotary Club of Amherst.
The fifth Amherst Community Grant award was recently given to the Building for the Future campaign, which is supporting the Hitchcock Center’s effort to construct a 9,000-square-foot living environmental education center that is scheduled to open in the fall of 2016.
“Only the second rainwater harvesting system approved in the commonwealth, our water system will not only provide all the daily water needs for our building and site, the system will serve as an innovative educational tool to teach the importance of our water cycle, clean water and conservation,” said Julie Johnson, Hitchcock’s executive director, in an email.
The center has raised nearly $4.9 million toward the $5.8 million project and is continuing to do fundraising.
The grant was presented at the Rotary’s transition dinner last month, held at 30 Boltwood at the Lord Jeffery Inn.
According to information supplied by the Rotary, both the local organization and Rotary International have embraced the importance of clean water, and are pleased to partner with Hitchcock in taking the Living Building Challenge, considered the highest measure of sustainable development in the built environment.
Previous grants have gone to Crocker Farm’s PGO to renovate the school’s playground, to the Amherst Survival Center to purchase kitchen equipment, to New England Public Radio to buy a digital audio storage and playback system for WFCR and to Wildwood School for renovations to their cafeteria/multi-purpose rooms.Click here to return to full list of news entries.