To travellers heading into Washington State via the Chopaka – Nighthawk crossing, the construction taking place at the U.S. border crossing since spring of this year is nothing new.
The Nighthawk, Port of Entry has been undergoing a design/build modernization this year. The U.S. General Services Administration, on behalf of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, has also incorporated Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) components and energy construction measures into the project plans for the Nighthawk entry point.
The LEED 2009 Green Building Rating System is a set of performance standards for certifying the design and construction of institutional buildings. Seven key areas are being addressed with this new construction, including such things as water efficieincy, environmental preservation, indoor environmental quality and design innovation.
The Nighthawk facility will receive LEED points for implementing the following items at the site:
– use of regional materials.
– water use reduction.
– optimal energy performance.
– use of low – emitting materials.
Upgrades will also include the construction of two wind turbines that will generate 20 kilowatts of electricity. One hundred and fifty prophylactic solar panels, designed to produce 33 kilowatts of electricity, will also be installed, affixed to solar tracking devices. A ground source heat pump and two roof mounted solar panels complete the energy efficient upgrades.The two roof mounted solar panels produce hot water that reverts to a heater/storage tank.
Construction for the Nighthawk modernization project is anticipated for completion in the spring of 2012.