Museum of Science and Discovery

MIAMI—For all the talk about new museums and cultural venues in Downtown Miami, an existing museum in Fort Lauderdale has won LEED Silver certification. The new EcoDiscovery Center wing of the Museum of Discovery and Science in Downtown Fort Lauderdale is officially green.

Stiles Construction built the two-story, 34,000-square-foot addition to the museum that effectively doubled the public space at the venue. The U.S. Green Building Council awarded the museum a certification in the category of “New Construction” for meeting LEED standards for energy use, lighting, water and material use, and incorporating a variety of sustainable strategies.

“Achieving LEED Silver certification on this new project is a testament to its quality as well as the dedication of the team,” says Tim Moore, Stiles’ president. “The industry is being challenged to move faster and reach further than ever before, and the museum serves as a prime example of what we can accomplish.”

By nature, the expansion is green. The new area demonstrates the global impact of climate change, the promise of alternative energy sources and the vital role of the Everglades in safeguarding Florida’s fragile water supply.

The focal point of this project is a North American River Otter exhibit, an indoor and outdoor habitat. Also featured are other Florida-themed exhibits, including a Storm Center, and Everglades Airboat Simulation Ride. The project also incorporates green responsibility with a new Go Green exhibit.

“This LEED certification is yet another terrific milestone for this project,” says Kim L. Cavendish, CEO of the Museum of Discovery and Science. “Stiles Construction did a superb job during the construction process. Not only did the team keep the project on schedule while minimizing any impact on our visitors during open hours, but also, as evidenced by this achievement, they built a quality project that represents the very essence of environment sustainability.”

The museum expansion represents the collective support of several major community donors. AutoNation, the lead donor, stepped forward in 2007 with $3 million for the renovation and renaming of the AutoNation IMAX 3D Theater. AutoNation was followed by $2 million donations from J.M. Family Enterprises, sponsoring the Great Hall of Science, and Broward Health partnering with the Museum to create the Powerful You! health exhibit that opened in 2010.

A number of $1 million dollar donations also helped propel the campaign, including: Bank of America; Broward County, The Emil Buehler Perpetual Trust; Carnival Corporation & PLC; Republic Services; and the late Stephen A. Keller. Other major donors include: Huizenga Family Foundation; Keith and Doreen Koenig, City Furniture; Wachovia; Publix Super Markets Charities; Terry Stiles; Hudson Family Foundation; Halmos Family Foundation; Federal Government; Harry T. Mangurian Foundation; Jim Oppenheimer; Mr. and Mrs. Manuel Aguero; Mr. and Mrs. Austin Forman; Mr. and Mrs. Robert Powell; Mr. and Mrs. Robert Roschman; and Sun Sentinel.