Gallery: Las Vegas CityCenter Set to Green Sin City


Las Vegas is taking the lead in green development by planning the largest privately financed development in the history of North America vying for the USGBC‘s LEED certification. At 18 million square feet, the new sustainable spot on the strip called CityCenter boasts a square footage that is bigger than all current LEED certified buildings combined. Currently under construction between the Bellagio and Monte Carlo resorts, the center’s first building, Aria, is scheduled to open at the end of 2009. An $8 billion venture between MGM MIRAGE and Dubai World, CityCenter is bringing sustainability to the forefront, rightfully earning the tag of one of the world’s largest environmentally sustainable urban communities.

The sustainable buzz around CityCenter starts with the team. At the core of the design are some of our favorite green-minded architects including Pelli Clarke Pelli, Foster + Partners, and Rafael Vinoly. The developers have also employed hundreds of sustainability consultants to bring a whole systems approach to the project, and the tradesmen carrying out construction are educated in green building practice. MGM MIRAGE has trained over 10,000 construction trade and craftsmen on green building techniques that are already being forged into the site.

CityCenter is making some pretty big efforts to tout itself as a model of sustainability. Green building practices like recycling construction waste, using eco-friendly materials, boosting natural lighting, and incorporating an onsite co-generation power plant are just a few of the ways that the project is earning its eco-credentials. Materials from the imploded Boardwalk Hotel (cleared for the site of CityCenter) are being recycled into the project, crushed to be recycled into material going into the project, and bathroom fixtures are being shipped to other countries wrapped in the old drapes and carpeting from the original hotel to be used again.

Additional efforts were undertaken to improve even the smallest details. Unhappy with the current designs of low flow water fixtures, MGM MIRAGE used their purchasing power to design custom low-flow features to high design standards. The sustainable step will save an estimated 76 million gallons of water daily when CityCenter is completed and occupied.

The finished CityCenter will include a resort casino, two non-gaming resort hotels, a 500,000 square foot retail and entertainment district and will also feature a $40 million public fine art program.

+ CityCenter


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  1. Betancourt September 26, 2010 at 6:52 pm

    I would like to study more thoroughly the materials used in the city center, someone could help me find more details of this?

  2. Trey Farmer August 10, 2009 at 4:43 pm

    Sustainable????? Who are we kidding? I know this is hardly the place to take a stand on this horribly misused marketing term, but what the hell? NV has thrown exorbitant amounts of tax credits at this thing, so much for welfare and public schools. It’s good to see developers being slightly less wasteful, but slightly less of a bad thing, does not, by any means, make it wonderful.

  3. DD002 August 10, 2009 at 1:02 am

    Has anyone taken into consideration what this is doing to the look and feel of the Strip? Hello? Tourists make the majority of the profits for Las Vegas with the gaming industry. What they are looking for is excitement, fun and big casinos. What appeal will this have to the tourist coming into town? Zilch. If you drive down the Strip now it looks like a Steel Monster sitting in the middle of the Strip. Vegas is making a losing bet on this one.

  4. WILL800 July 14, 2008 at 4:44 pm

    From what I’ve seen lately, it’s going to be a beautiful project but has anyone give any long due consideration about the traffic problems it will be creating along the busiest section of the Strip? Is anything being done to alleviated that humongous problem or are we just going to have to live with it and spend up to a half an hour driving down/up the Strip from Tropicana to Flamingo.

    I pesonally think that this problem has been overlooked or shoved under the carpet to let the next guy worry about.

  5. rdhanson June 16, 2008 at 1:19 pm

    I’m pretty sure that they tore down older, more inefficient housing to build these buildings. And as to building them in a parched desert where nothing will grow, well that just leaves more fertile ground to farm, doesn’t it?

  6. lodel June 10, 2008 at 10:38 pm

    Don’t forget four of the towers are residence condos – one of them being a hotel condo. It’s good to see some density actually coming to the city of hell.

  7. BJ June 10, 2008 at 7:43 am

    I can’t help but wonder how much they’ll spend on VOC free paint and formaldehyde free carpet, just to fill the place with enough noise pollution and second hand smoke to kill an elephant.

  8. tuffghost June 9, 2008 at 4:21 pm

    Is the local environment of the project taken into account by LEED? It seems like an ‘green’ luxery hotel project in the middle of a parched desert during a drought isn’t much of a green project at all. There needs to be some context for these claims. One less hotel would be a lot better for the environment than one more with a certification slapped on it.

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