Asee peer logo

Shangri La: A Leed Platinum Project

Download Paper |


2010 Annual Conference & Exposition


Louisville, Kentucky

Publication Date

June 20, 2010

Start Date

June 20, 2010

End Date

June 23, 2010



Conference Session

Construction Engineering Poster Session

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

15.1061.1 - 15.1061.18



Permanent URL

Download Count


Request a correction

Paper Authors


Enno Koehn Lamar University

visit author page

Enno “Ed” Koehn is Professor of Civil Engineering at Lamar University. Dr. Koehn has served as the principle investigator for several research and development projects dealing with various aspects of construction. He also has experience in the design, scheduling, and estimating of facilities. He has authored/co-authored over 200 papers in engineering education, as well as the general areas of civil and construction engineering. Dr. Koehn is a member of ASEE, AACE International, ASCE, NSPE, Chi Epsilon, Tau Beta Pi, Sigma Xi, and is a registered Professional Engineer and Surveyor.

visit author page


Nishant Shah Lamar University

visit author page

Nishant Shah was enrolled in the College of Graduate Studies and the Department of Civil Engineering at Lamar University. He was awarded the Master of Engineering (ME) Degree in 2009.

visit author page


John Koehn Chadron State College

visit author page

James F. Koehn is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Business and Economics at Chadron State College, Nebraska, where he is also the Director of the Nebraska Business Development Center. Koehn currently serves on the Education Advisory Committee of the Nebraska Board of Public Accountancy. He holds Bachelor of Arts and Master of Accounting degrees from Rice University and earned a Juris Doctor from Baylor University. Koehn has worked for an international accounting firm in both their Houston and New York City offices, and he practiced tax and corporate law in Austin, Texas. Dr. Koehn is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, Texas Society of Certified Public Accountants, and the State Bar of Texas.

visit author page

Download Paper |

NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

SHANGRI LA: A LEED Platinum Project Abstract

Over the years Shangri La has represented a place of beauty, peace and enlightenment. Today, nestled within 252 acres in the heart of Orange, Texas, Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center is a program of the H.J. Lutcher Stark Foundation, whose mission is to improve and enrich the quality of life in Southeast Texas and encourage and assist education. The unique ecosystem of Shangri La presents an ideal opportunity to further that mission as well as carry on the vision of H.J Lutcher Stark, the man who originally developed it more than 60 years ago.

Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center is the first project in Texas and the 50th project in the world to earn the U.S. Green Building Council's Platinum certification for LEED®-NC1, which verifies the design and construction reached the highest green building and performance measures. Specific green features are included in the LEED section of this paper.

As one of the most earth-friendly projects in the world, Shangri La Botanical Gardens and Nature Center offers a glimpse of how people can live in harmony with nature. The combination of gardens and nature at Shangri La presents a serene oasis for retreat and renewal. It also gives civil and construction engineering students the opportunity to explore, discover and learn the concepts of sustainability.


“Gardening requires lots of water - most of it in the form of individual perspiration”. Without gardens the world will be like a black and white movie. This, now-a-days no one would like to prefer. There are lots of other forms of entertainment today. However, nothing can replace gardens and forest woodlands. They give us immense satisfaction and peace. They also help in reducing environmental hazards.

Shangri La is one such kind of a garden. It is a botanical garden which covers 252 acres land in the heart of a city. This garden has more than 300 plant species which attracts tourists, botanists, etc.

Shangri La

'Shangri La' is a place of beauty, like a paradise on earth. In 1942, lumberman and philanthropist Lutcher Stark began designing and constructing his own Shangri La on a 252-acre site along Adams Bayou, a cypress/tupelo swamp in Orange2, at the far southeastern corner of Texas near its border with Louisiana. By 1950, as national magazines gave the place widespread exposure, thousands of people were visiting the site. Unfortunately, in 1958, a snowstorm also visited the town, destroying and eventually closing the garden for approximately 50 years.

In 2002, the Nelda C. and H. J. Lutcher Stark Foundation3 decided to rebuild the botanical garden. The foundation hired noted landscape architect Jeffrey Carbo, of Alexandria, La., and terrestrial ecologist Michael Hoke, (Fig. 1) recipient of a presidential teaching award and founder

Koehn, E., & Shah, N., & Koehn, J. (2010, June), Shangri La: A Leed Platinum Project Paper presented at 2010 Annual Conference & Exposition, Louisville, Kentucky. 10.18260/1-2--15870

ASEE holds the copyright on this document. It may be read by the public free of charge. Authors may archive their work on personal websites or in institutional repositories with the following citation: © 2010 American Society for Engineering Education. Other scholars may excerpt or quote from these materials with the same citation. When excerpting or quoting from Conference Proceedings, authors should, in addition to noting the ASEE copyright, list all the original authors and their institutions and name the host city of the conference. - Last updated April 1, 2015