A few years back we wrote about the renovation of Portland's Edith Green-Wendell Wyatt Federal Building; it was going to have the world's green wall. Now the building is almost finished and it doesn't appear to have the green wall, but it does have nice shades, which moderate and temper the solar heat and light before it gets in. Shades on a building can look cool, too.
Deisgn Architect Jim Cutler and architects of record SERA describe the process of dealing with the competing goals of shading and daylighting:
As a result of this iterative modeling and analysis approach, the building uses 55–60% less energy than a typical office building. Its efficiency is derived in part from an exceptional façade design with shading devices stretching up the entire 18-story height of the west face and an integrated shade/light reflector on the south and east faces optimized for the building’s off-axis orientation.
It also has a dramatic tilted hat of solar panels, has radiant cooling and heating, 160,000 gallons of rainwater storage (created out of an old rifle range) and that solar PV hat delivers 180 KW. It's also going for LEED Platinum, unless the Republicans manage to pull the GSA buildings out of LEED.
More at SERA Architects.