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LEED Platinum Dallas: Prairie Creek Branch Library

Amidst strip centers in Pleasant Grove, Prairie Creek Branch Library sits inside fenced prairie land. (OK, it's a re-created prairie but it still uses native grasses and trees.) Everything from these low maintenance and native plants to the indoor energy saving measures has had sustainability gurus geeking out since Prairie Creek delivered in 2010. Take a peek in the first installment of our new series behind the scenes at Dallas' greenest buildings.


The LEED Platinum building originally aimed for LEED Silver and was first awarded LEED Gold. The four-acre land on a 100-year flood plain was purchased for $276k in 2008. Like all truly sustainable projects, recycling and an attention to environmentally conscious practices began long before construction. The site concept re-established a one-acre prairie and connected to the adjacent St. Augustine Park.

Later in 2008, a $3.8M contract was awarded to Turner Construction for the 18k SF branch of the Dallas Public Library.


DSGN and Turner implemented solar energy and a geothermal/heat pump system. A daylight and artificial light system integrate for minimal energy consumption. Greywater and HVAC condensate are recaptured and reused.

Landscape architect Mesa Design and Kelly James Design Group implemented a retention pond to negate the need of permanent irrigation for the native landscape. A bioswale removes pollution from surface runoff.

80% of the 50 tons of steel comprising the building's frame are made from recycled material. Turner locally sourced the exterior bricks and stones and poured concrete on-site using a dry kiln technique to improve air quality.


DSGN designed the library to consume 32% less energy, 56% less fossil fuels and 35% less potable water than comparable city facilities. Plus, nearly every window—except the roof windows, of course—in the 65,000-book library overlooks the prairie.