High Performance Preservation

© JW Riebkes

© JW Riebkes

In its stewardship role, Colorado Chautauqua Association (CCA) pursues plans and strategies to ensure a sustainable future for the Colorado Chautauqua, including a commitment towards making the Colorado Chautauqua a leader in environmentally sustainable practices successfully integrated within a National Historic Landmark setting.

Additionally, and consistent with it’s historic mission and purpose, CCA seeks to showcase the Colorado Chautauqua campus as a demonstration site to educate visitors about the issues and opportunities associated with applying innovative environmental concepts and technologies in the context of historic preservation.

Environmental sustainability program elements include three primary areas of focus —

Energy Performance

Colorado Chautauqua Association’s energy conservation strategies seek to reduce energy demand while enhancing visitor comfort in our historic cottages and public buildings through an integrated approach that balances sustainability “best practices” in insulation / air sealing, lighting, appliances, windows, heating / cooling, hot water and passive shading within historic preservation guidelines and constraints. This requires close collaboration with outside partners such as the preservation community, City of Boulder, and Xcel Energy.

Colorado Chautauqua Association is also exploring incorporating innovative alternative and renewable energy generation technologies that can be implemented without compromising the historic integrity of the Colorado Chautauqua campus and its structures. This potentially includes areas such as integrated photovoltaic shingles, off-site solar and on- or off-site geo-thermal applications.

Water Conservation

Colorado Chautauqua Association is pursuing more effective management of, and reduction in erosion from, storm water on the Colorado Chautauqua’s 26 acre campus. This includes improving storm water management so as to minimize needs for potable water for landscape irrigation.

Colorado Chautauqua Association is converting to high-efficiency irrigation system features and controllers, as well as developing landscape design guidelines specifying plant selections that are generally indigenous to the Colorado Front Range and / or are drought tolerant.

Colorado Chautauqua Association continues to implement technologies to reduce indoor water consumption, such as high-efficiency toilets, low-flow aerators, low-flow faucets and exploration of potential greywater applications.

Conservation Within Operations

Colorado Chautauqua Association is moving forward towards a goal of “zero solid waste” generation, including recycling, re-use of building materials, and composting.

Colorado Chautauqua Association is exploring the potential use of electric vehicles for operational support and guest car-share.

Through the Learning Lab concept and our investigative research and experimentation to date, CCA has compiled valuable data related to energy efficiency upgrades to existing historic buildings. We have completed several case studies that identify ways to greatly reduce the resource consumption of historically significant structures while honoring their historic value and contribution to the heritage of our community. Most importantly, we have shared these lessons learned through on-site tours and off-site presentations.