Lake Mead National Recreation Area – Entrance Stations

Nevada and Arizona

This project included five entrance stations at the Lake Mead National Recreation Area. A number of sustainable features were incorporated, although the project did not pursue LEED certification. Two of these were photovoltaic panels, which also serve as sun shades for the fee collection stations, and high-mass building construction to lower energy costs and increase staff comfort. The buildings also incorporate a high level of security, deemed important due to their remote locations.

Landscape was a particular challenge. Since the entry stations are located in an upland desert that receives an average of less than 6 inches of precipitation annually, the ancient system of water harvesting was used. In water harvesting, water that meanders through landscape areas is collected, stored and re-distributed to plants by means of both passive and active/solar-powered irrigation systems. Each entry station has its own character. Local plant material collected from each individual site was replanted and will become entirely sustainable over time. Civil engi­neering included roadway design, site layout and grading, water tank and pump system, and on-site wastewater treatment design.