Sunday, July 06, 2008

'Green' campground restroom serves as prototype

GRAND HAVEN, Mich. (AP) — When nature calls, campers at Grand Haven State Park can now go "green" at a new, environmentally friendly toilet-shower building that is the first of its kind in the state park system.

"This is the first of its kind, so we kind of get to be the ones to test it out," says Patrick Whalen, supervisor of Grand Haven State Park.

The water- and energy-efficient product, designed by Grand Rapids-based Integrated Architecture LLC, features natural daytime lighting, artificial nighttime lighting triggered by occupancy detectors, timer-controlled showers with on-demand water heaters and reduced-flow shower heads, and low-flow toilets and urinals.

A small array of solar panels on the roof supplements the electricity used for the building's ventilation system. Building materials, including masonry, metal and wood, were selected for their long-term maintenance qualities. A new sanitary sewer line should mean a safer watershed.
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