Sustainable Design

At VMDO, sustainability is integral to our business philosophy and our design approach. We are committed to designing socially responsible buildings that make palpable contributions to their communities, particularly in terms of human and environmental health as well as high performance building design.

Sustainable Design for Educational Institutions

VMDO’s founding principals have clearly established a vision for deep sustainability in our business practices and design work. Our entire staff is committed to this vision. A leader in the green building sector, VMDO offers experience- and research-driven expertise in delivering high-performance, sustainable buildings – evidenced by the following milestones:

As a practice, VMDO acknowledges the relationship between human endeavors and global climate change, a problem with grave implications for this and future generations. Furthermore, we recognize that current practices in the building industry result in patterns of energy use, resource consumption, and waste production that contribute substantially to this problem, and that our industry has a responsibility to take action in light of this fact. As leaders in our field, we believe it is our responsibility to design socially and environmentally responsible buildings that that are built to last and adapt, reduce and even reverse impact, and give back to communities through money savings and healthier built and natural environments.

The following themes highlight ways in which we work to reinforce sustainable design innovations and strategies in each of our projects:

Energy

Our buildings realize significant energy savings through the use of multiple strategies, including: proper orientation, tight building envelopes with air barriers, appropriate use of glazing, occupancy and daylight sensors, natural ventilation techniques, and efficient HVAC systems. VMDO is a leader in the specification of ground source heat pump systems and net-zero energy design. Energy modeling is integrated into our design process to help us make design decisions based upon projected life cycle cost impacts – in BTUs, kilowatts, and dollars.

Water

VMDO has consistently advocated the use of water conservation initiatives including water efficient fixtures and equipment, rainwater harvesting, and landscape designed for minimized irrigation. Our record of responsible water stewardship includes initiatives such as vegetated roofs, bio-filtration systems, rain gardens, constructed wetlands, and low impact development.

Occupant Health + Well-Being

Indoor spaces should inspire and nurture the life within. Abundant daylight, fresh air, and careful moisture control are important standards that should be measured and verified to support the health and productivity of building occupants.

Durability

We design buildings to last and the durability of our buildings contributes greatly to their sustainability. By designing for adaptation in lieu of demolition and replacement, we strive to conserve material resources and energy expenses.

VMDO’s founding principals have clearly established a vision for deep sustainability in our business practices and design work. Our entire staff is committed to this vision. A leader in the green building sector, VMDO offers experience- and research-driven expertise in delivering high-performance, sustainable buildings – evidenced by the following milestones:

As a practice, VMDO acknowledges the relationship between human endeavors and global climate change, a problem with grave implications for this and future generations. Furthermore, we recognize that current practices in the building industry result in patterns of energy use, resource consumption, and waste production that contribute substantially to this problem, and that our industry has a responsibility to take action in light of this fact. As leaders in our field, we believe it is our responsibility to design socially and environmentally responsible buildings that that are built to last and adapt, reduce and even reverse impact, and give back to communities through money savings and healthier built and natural environments.

The following themes highlight ways in which we work to reinforce sustainable design innovations and strategies in each of our projects:

Energy

Our buildings realize significant energy savings through the use of multiple strategies, including: proper orientation, tight building envelopes with air barriers, appropriate use of glazing, occupancy and daylight sensors, natural ventilation techniques, and efficient HVAC systems. VMDO is a leader in the specification of ground source heat pump systems and net-zero energy design. Energy modeling is integrated into our design process to help us make design decisions based upon projected life cycle cost impacts – in BTUs, kilowatts, and dollars.

Water

VMDO has consistently advocated the use of water conservation initiatives including water efficient fixtures and equipment, rainwater harvesting, and landscape designed for minimized irrigation. Our record of responsible water stewardship includes initiatives such as vegetated roofs, bio-filtration systems, rain gardens, constructed wetlands, and low impact development.

Occupant Health + Well-Being

Indoor spaces should inspire and nurture the life within. Abundant daylight, fresh air, and careful moisture control are important standards that should be measured and verified to support the health and productivity of building occupants.

Durability

We design buildings to last and the durability of our buildings contributes greatly to their sustainability. By designing for adaptation in lieu of demolition and replacement, we strive to conserve material resources and energy expenses.

Recent Work

Discovery Elementary School

Discovery Elementary School

Recognizing that students are the creators of our collective future, Discovery Elementary sets the stage…

View Project
Young Harris College Rollins Campus Center + Miller Library

Young Harris College Rollins Campus Center + Miller Library

Named for its donor, the O. Wayne Rollins Foundation, the Rollins Center is the signature facility at…

View Project

Recent Blog Posts

Reflections from Green Schools Conference 2016

This article was originally published by the USGBC and provides a recap of our experiences at the 2016 Green Schools Conference in Pittsburgh.

View Post

Green Apple Day of Service at Discovery Elementary School

VMDO staff traveled to the newly opened Discovery Elementary School in Arlington, VA to participate in the annual Green Apple Day of Service.

View Post

Young Harris College Campus Center Recognized by USGBC at Georgia Capitol

On February 3, 2016 USGBC Georgia celebrated the work of educational facilities in the state that are creating healthy and efficient learning environments.

View Post