Project Detail

Hawaiʻi Preparatory Academy | Energy Lab

New STEM Facility | Waimea, Hawaii

Designed to meet Hawai'i Preparatory Academy’s goal to create a high school science building focused on the study of alternative energy, the 6100 sf Energy Lab inspires students to experiment with renewable energy technologies.

The award-winning building employs photovoltaics and wind turbines to meet its energy needs (it uses no more energy than it generates over the course of a year), harvests rainwater to meet its potable water needs, uses natural ventilation, and has views outdoors from 100% of its occupied spaces. To promote environmental literacy, students can monitor the building’s energy use in real time.

The design supports project-based learning, a key component in 21st century learning pedagogies, and encourages scientific study both indoors and out. Project ideas are conceived by teams in a project room, simulated at computer workstations, fabricated in the research lab or in workshops, and tested on the building grounds.

The facility is certified by the Living Building Challenge, a green assessment threshold that exceeds the U.S. Green Building Council's Platinum LEED rating.

Honors and Awards

Buckminster Fuller Challenge, Buckminster Fuller Institute 2012 | Walter Taylor Award - AASA/AIA/CEFPI 2011 | Grand Conceptor Engineering Excellence Award ACEC of Hawaii 2011 | First Place 7th Annual Design & Build - Forest Stewardship Council 2011 | Living Building Certification - LBI/ 2011 | Merit Winner - Wood Design & Buildings 2010 | Platinum Award ACEC New York 2010 | Merit Award Excellence in Sustainable Design & Development Integrated Design/Integrated Development 2010 | AIA Honolulu Award of Excellence & Jack C. Lipman AIA Members' Choice Award 2010 | AIA New England Design Awards 2010 Award | Grand Prize - Learning by Design Fall 2010 | Special Citation American School & University Architectural Portfolio 2010 | BSA Excellence in Design Honor Award 2010


Amanda Sturgeon, FAIA, Creating Biophilic Buildings (Kansas City: Ecotone Publishing, 2017)

Brad Liljequist, The Power of Zero: Learning from the World's First Net Zero Energy Buildings (Kansas City: Ecotone Publishing, 2016)

Sabrina Leone and Leone Spita, Eco Structures: Forms of Sustainable Architecture (Novara, Italy: White Star Publishers, 2010)

Time Span 2008-2010
Type New Science Building
Client Hawai'i Preparatory Academy
Size 6,100 sf
Budget $4 million
Architectural Team David Croteau, Principle-in-charge; Kelley Banks, Project Architect

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