Read about Mueller in the City of Austin's 2009 Sustainability Achievements in Municipal Buildings and Infrastructure.
Mueller is leading the way as a model for sustainable community design. Here are a few of the forward-thinking features we've incorporated into Mueller's land plan:
- Home designs are very resource efficient, use non-toxic and recyclable materials, and help maintain and improve air and water quality.
- The community's extensive greenspaces and utility systems also go a long way to keep Mueller clean, green and sustainable.
- Austin Energy has built a groundbreaking on-site power plant that provides substantial environmental benefits.
- The mixed-use community plan gives Mueller residents a lifestyle full of choices that don't involve getting in their cars. Recreation, transit, shopping, entertainment, employment—it's all right here at Mueller.
Sustainable development is one of the six guiding tenets of Mueller, and it’s being achieved on a community-wide basis in several ways:
- Mueller is an urban infill project developed away from surface and groundwater resources and close to downtown and other dense areas to reduce auto pollution.
- There is one tree for every four parking spaces in retail centers helping to reduce the urban heat-island effect and increase walkability, and Catellus is planting a minimum of 15,000 trees, many of which were preserved from a pecan farm outside Austin destined for demolition to make way for another development.
- Mueller is planned with mass transit in mind, dedicated bike paths and walkways along every street to reduce dependence on automobiles.
- Mueller is recycling old runway materials into street construction, breaking down old hangars bolt-by-bolt to use them as recycled building materials, converting historic buildings into public spaces and using local building materials whenever possible.
- 20 percent of Mueller’s 700 acres are being preserved for parks and open space, playscapes are constructed from recycled materials and a native and rare landscape is being preserved (through a partnership with the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center).
- Catellus, homebuilders and other developers at Mueller have all pledged to use only native plants in all landscaping to conserve water use and community-wide irrigation will use reclaimed “gray” water.
- The Ronald McDonald House at Mueller will be the first of its kind in the nation to utilize solar power. Meanwhile, Austin’s largest public art project ever, at a key Mueller gateway, is a series of 18- to 20-foot tall flower-shaped sculptures that collect the sun’s rays and convert them into solar energy to light the structures at night. Residents and businesses alike are also adding solar power technologies.
- To meet the power needs at Mueller and, at the same time, improve air quality for the region, Austin Energy built an innovative power plant as part of the community’s infrastructure. This plant provides electricity to a Mueller microgrid and chilled water (for air conditioning) to the Dell Children’s Medical Center of Central Texas and nearby employment centers. This all-in-one cooling-heating-power (CHP) plant creates benefits that are right in line with Mueller’s commitment to sustainability. Because of the on-site plant, Mueller properties are able to share HVAC infrastructure and lower their energy costs. At the same time, Austin Energy is able to generate cleaner electricity for the community, thus helping to improve regional air quality.