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Graywater Reuse to Irrigate a Living Wall at Bertschi School

The Bertschi School Living Science wing is an award-winning building located in the Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle, completed in 2011, which includes a small classroom, science lab and ethnobotanical garden. It was the first building certified under the Living Building Challenge V2.0, considered the most stringent green building certification in the world. Among other deep green features, the project reuses greywater from handwashing sinks to irrigate an interior living wall. This helped the project achieve “Net Zero Water” as defined by the Living Building Challenge, i.e. a building that collects, treats and infiltrates all water used on the site. To meet state and local code requirements, the greywater system had to have a conventional overflow connection to the city sewer but under normal operation, no water is sent down these pipes.