As the tenth building in the world to achieve full Living Building Challenge certification, the Brock Environmental Center continues to draw attention for its sustainable, resilient design. The center has been named among the Top 10 recipients of the American Institute of Architects COTE (Committee on the Environment) Award in 2017.

The Center is also the subject of the Living Building Challenge Series (LBCS) sixth book, “Brock Environmental Center for a Living Chesapeake.”

In a deep dive narrative about this extraordinary building — located on a peninsula near the southern shores of The Chesapeake Bay — the book’s author Juliet Grable weaves together the many strands of the building’s journey, from initial concept and design decisions through completion and award-winning recognition. The story of the building’s many sustainable and restorative features includes a behind- the-scenes look at the why and how of the project’s precedent-setting rainwater treatment system, an onsite waterworks that catapulted the project to full Living Building Certification status.

“This book documents the journey from napkin sketch to full building occupancy, starting with the preservation of a rare parcel of undeveloped shoreline in a densely developed region,” said Amanda Sturgeon, CEO of the International Living Future Institute (ILFI). “It’s part engaging narrative and part practical guide, informed with compelling stories from many points of view – from the designers to the engineers, to the builders, consultants and the Chesapeake Bay Foundation staff.”

Illustrated with beautiful photographs and instructive diagrams, Brock Environmental Center for a Living Chesapeake serves as an inspiration for those who appreciate the vision of Living Buildings as the model for our future built environment.

Praise for the project includes this remark by Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe: “The Brock Center is at the forefront of sustainability and it sets a high bar that should inspire many people for generations to come. I am particularly proud that the center mirrors the Commonwealth’s commitment to natural resource conservation, environmental education, and our shared future.”

More information about the book, its author, and how to make a purchase, can be found here:


Written By

ILFI Staff

The International Living Future Institute is committed to working toward a future that is socially just, culturally rich and ecologically restorative.