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July 22 2010 13:26

Green Street: Back to the Future

Contact:, 651-757-2559

St. Paul, Minn. — The Eco Experience, a 25,000 square-foot interactive exhibit, is returning for its fifth year at the Minnesota State Fair. This year’s exhibit features a “Green Street,” a mini-version of a neighborhood with residential homes, community spaces, commercial buildings, renewable energy and transportation options all designed to reduce the carbon footprint.

Each of the four buildings on Green Street has a theme:

Planning: A small commercial building focuses on the importance of thorough planning before starting a building or remodeling project. Planning creates opportunities for savings and efficiencies while reducing waste through design, landscaping and water management. The Planning Building will also feature information about green remodeling and new homes certification programs like Minnesota GreenStar and LEED for homes.

Performance: Smart remodeling begins and ends with performance. The Performance Building will provide information on combustion safety, indoor air quality and moisture to help assure homes are safer, healthier and more durable. The exposed building shell, insulation and ducts will show how a home — new or old — can be properly ventilated, air-sealed and insulated to create a healthy, energy-efficient living environment. 

Interiors: The third building focuses on home interiors, and features completed kitchens and bathrooms with sustainably-made cabinets and countertops, a tankless water heater and resource-efficient appliances and fixtures.

Conservation and Renewable Energy: The final building showcases energy conservation and renewable energy, including point of use energy meters, whole-house energy monitoring, and solar electric and hot water systems. 

Solar-powered transportation:  Electric vehicles, which will become available to consumers later this year, can be powered by energy from the sun. Solar power used to power vehicles does not produce any emissions of greenhouse gases or air pollutants. A solar carport on Green Street showcases how batteries in electric vehicles can be charged through renewable energy produced by solar photovoltaic panels. It features an interactive plug-in charging station that models the type of public charging stations that will be located in Minneapolis/Saint Paul along the Innovation Corridor early next year. 

Cutting edge landscaping: All along Green Street are ideas on how to capture and reuse water, plant with indigenous plants, establish green roof projects and install community gardens. Also featured is a non-tire rubber mulch that is made in St. Paul by a leading rubber recycler.


  • WHAT: Fifth annual Eco Experience at the Minnesota State Fair
  • WHEN: Thursday, Aug. 26-Monday, Sept. 6
    9 a.m. to 9 p.m. daily
  • WHERE:  The Progress Center
    The corner of Randall and Cosgrove
    Look for the 123' wind turbine blade

About the Eco Experience:
A partnership between the Minnesota State Fair, the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and dozens of organizations and businesses across the state, the Eco Experience has become the second most popular exhibit at the fair. The Eco Experience is the largest environmental event of its kind in the country in the last two decades. Since 2006, more than one and a half million visitors have attended the 25,000 square-foot exhibit to learn more about clean air and water, saving energy, climate change, healthy local food, transportation, green building and remodeling, and other ways to lead more eco-friendly lives. Discover easy and uniquely Minnesota ways to go green in your daily routine by exploring cutting-edge green technologies and having fun with interactive displays, kids activities, performances and more. Look for more information and schedules on