A program of the Cascadia Region Green Building Council, the Living Building Challenge is not a contest or a point system. It is a set of stringent prerequisites that include generating all energy with renewable resources, capturing and treating all water used in the building and using building materials void of hazardous chemicals.
Projects can be certified as Living Buildings if they prove they meet all of the program requirements after 12 months of continued operations and full occupancy. The OCSL is one of the first projects to participate in the Living Building Challenge and has been named as one of the first Living Buildings in the world.
The Omega Center chose Timely Signs to provide sustainable interior and exterior signage that could meet the environmental requirements set forth by the Living Building Challenge. The exterior building letters and the interior sculpture quote were plasma cut from sheets of salvaged steel plate. Rather than coat them with a chemical finish or paint, they were left in their natural state and allowed to rust. The mottled orange surface works well with the building’s color palette and will change and evolve over time, much like the building itself.
The interior interpretive panels demonstrate the various energy processes used at the center. These were printed using Roland Eco-Solv Low VOC inks on a 100% cotton fabric called UltraCotton. They were installed using top and bottom pole pockets suspended from FSC certified hardwood dowels. The fundraising banner was printed using the same inks on BioFlex, a biodegradable vinyl banner material. All of the materials used in this facility represent the most sustainable solutions available for signage at the time the building was constructed.