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Photo of a group of young students listening to a presentation in front of SU CASA's porch at the Mission Verde Center @ Cooper. Enlarge image

In 2008, groHome was reconstructed at the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum in College Station. It is now part of a sustainable educational facility in San Antonio.
(Courtesy of Richard Nira)

Who: Texas A&M University
What: groHome/SU CASA (Sustainable Urban Center for the Advancement of San Antonio)
Mission Verde Center @ Cooper
1700 Tampico St.
San Antonio, TX 78207
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Public tours: For tour information, call 210-633-2427.

Solar Decathlon 2007

Texas A&M University: Changing With the Times

Texas A&M's groHome is used as a multipurpose educational, training, and research facility at the Mission Verde Center @ Cooper in San Antonio. Originally constructed for the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2007, the house was renamed SU CASA (Sustainable Urban Center for the Advancement of San Antonio) for its new role in the community.

In spring 2008, groHome was first reconstructed on the grounds of the George Bush Presidential Library and Museum in College Station, Texas. The house was open for public tours over the course of the next year and hosted thousands of visitors. Following the exhibit, the College of Architecture partnered with the Texas Center for Applied Technology and the Texas Engineering Experiment Station to dismantle and move groHome to its final destination.

On Jan. 25, 2010, San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro introduced the house as a centerpiece of the Mission Verde Center @ Cooper. Mission Verde was established to provide training in sustainable industries for jobless community members. groHome now serves the community in an economically disadvantaged area where James Fennimore Cooper Middle School once stood.

"Through the demonstration, implementation, and evaluation of a broad range of sustainability strategies and technologies, the center can play a critical role as a transformational model for sustainable redevelopment of disadvantaged communities," says Jorge Vanegas, dean of the College of Architecture at Texas A&M.

Thanks to a vision larger than one house, one school, or one competition, the Texas A&M Solar Decathlon 2007 team succeeded in making a contribution to the sustainable future.