Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor and Destination Center

The National Park Service’s Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor and Destination Center houses exhibits reflecting the heritage and development of the Parkway, as well as space for regional orientation and visitor information. A digital-immersive theatre showing high definition film of the Parkway is a feature attraction, and eight touch-screen computer kiosks allow visitors to learn more about regional attractions. The building evokes a tree-house-like atmosphere allowing visitors to experience the majestic vistas and surrounding woodlands for which the Parkway is known. Sustainable features include a “green” roof with plants that provide insulation and air filtration; trombe walls made of glass on the outside and cement inside, with dead air space in between to help hold in heat during the winter and cool air in the summer, radiant floor heating, daylighting, and cement walls made with fly ash, a recycled waste product.


Intrusion detection and video surveillance systems for the destination center.


This project received Honorable Mention, Institutional (not including schools), Non-Profit, Healthcare Winner from Environmental Design+Construction magazine, 2008. It is the recipient of the 2009 Federal Energy and Water Management award in the Sustainable Design/High Performance Buildings – Organization category from the Department of the Interior and the Department of Energy. It also received the 2009 Committee on the Environment Award from the AIA North Carolina.

Project Data
Asheville, North Carolina 12,800 square feet Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing, Fire Protection, Commissioning, Communications, Lighting, Security LEED Gold certified Lord Aeck Sargent