We all remember them: dusty, old, and often smelly. Built as temporary solutions yet used for years past their expiration date.
While they're often unpleasant to be in, portable classrooms aren't going away anytime soon. Portable construction costs amount to one third the cost of building a permanent structure, making them difficult for school districts to move away from.
What's difficult to see when these structures are initially built, however, is their lifetime cost, which actually amounts to twice the cost of typical permanent classrooms. This is due to high maintenance requirements, envelope inefficiency and high heating costs.
What Earthfix asks in the following documentary is: can the portable be re-invented?
Thankfully it can, and has been. Green portables are already being built around the country, including one at The Perkins School in Seattle. What's different about this particular structure is that it's the first of its kind in the world built to meet the Living Building Standards - the worlds strictest rules in sustainable building.
One of the key factors that allowed Cascadia to be used on this project is that the 300A LBV Window Series is a Living Building Challenge, red-list free product. It is currently the only window in the world on this list.
Overall improvements over the old portables include:
  • The use of Non-toxic Materials
  • Increased Natural Ventilation
  • Open Ceilings
  • More Efficient Building Enclosure (Including Cascadia Fiberglass Windows)
For more information, see Earthfix's article here.