The City of St. Louis Park partnered with RJM Construction to build a new interpretive center, replacing an undersized and outdated facility.
Awards of Excellence 2021, Park and Facility Category, Minnesota Recreation and Park Association (MRPA)
Innovation in Park Design Award, the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA)
MNCREW’s 2020 Celebration Awards Excellence in Environmental Sustainability
2021 Architecture Merit Award, AIA San Francisco
This award-winning building design seamlessly connects visitors to nature, is accessible, and environmentally friendly with many energy-saving measures throughout the site. The new, innovative interpretive center provides classrooms, exhibit and lounge spaces, storage, and multipurpose rooms. Some unique features include the wood frame glulam structure, solar energy, geo-thermal energy, an interactive rainwater feature for educational purposes, and bird-safe glass.
Programming, staff operations, and public needs eventually outgrew the former space over its 70 years of existence. Located remotely uphill from the parking lot also presented accessibility challenges for visitors with disabilities and younger children. The site is now fully accessible, with first class programming, reduction in energy consumption, and easily blends in with nature through its location and design.