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As well as providing for its own energy needs with a rooftop solar array, 435 Indio produces zero carbon emissions. As part of its energy-independent design, the office space uses a solar-powered smart lighting control system that adjusts ambient light at every fixture. During the day, the interior is illuminated with optimal natural light via skylights and manually operable windows.

Related: Net Zero Georgina Residence Blurs the Indoor-Outdoor Boundary in Santa Monica

Passive ventilation strategy is used to regulate the interior temperature along with insulated concrete walls and electrochromatic windows, which respond to sun intensity by transitioning from clear to semi-opaque. Throughout the night, the automated system flushes hot air out windows and skylights.

As the structure is designed to produce all of its own energy needs, the tenants will never have to pay electric bills. Additionally, the strategic use of natural light, fresh air, and community green space enhance the work environment, resulting in healthy, happy, productive employees. The building’s energy use is closely monitored during work hours, and both employees and visitors can view real-time energy use data displayed on a screen in the lobby.

Although buildings with ultra-efficient energy features is nothing new, RMW Architects wanted to use 435 Indio as a model for how leased office space can incorporate sustainable aspects by encouraging tenants and developers to embrace green design strategies.

+ RMW Architecture & Interiors Images by Bruce Damonte