VSECU – St. Johnsbury St. Johnsbury, Vermont

  • 2015—Vermont Green Building Network Commercial Building Going Green Honorable Mention

The VSECU’s new branch is located 3 miles north of St. Johnsbury, Vermont. VSECU choose to renovate an existing building to minimize environmental impacts. The existing building was a pre-engineered steel structure with steel stud walls and fiberglass insulation and the finishes had exceeded their intended lifespan, heating and cooling were marginal, and half of the building was on unstable soils. It was decided to remediate the foundation and provide a deep energy retrofit.

The pre-engineered steel structure allowed the design team to take advantage of the 20 foot high space above the existing 8′ high drop ceilings. The ceilings were left low at the entry and personal teller machine area, and raised to emphasize the central lobby. Skylights were added to provide natural light to the central lobby, which contributes to the open feeling. Acoustics are controlled via the wood ceiling plane and the wood wall “tower”. Planes of materials are combined to form a composition which creates a very comfortable, yet dynamic space. The use of local and durable materials was emphasized. Slate, Maple woodwork and doors, and Hubbardton Forge lighting were specified. Brick from Massachusetts, Kynar coated metal roofing and siding, and fiber cement provide for a durable exterior.

Much attention was paid to detailing an energy efficient facility. The roof was encased with structural insulated panels and the walls were replaced with wood framing, cellulose insulation and exterior rigid insulation achieving a R-30. Windows are high performance fiberglass triple glazed with a NFRC whole window R-value of 6.7. Air sealing was crucial to achieve .076 cfm50/sf of building shell. Lighting is a combination of fluorescent and LED with step dimming and motion sensors throughout. Mechanical system consists of high efficiency air source heat pumps and energy recovery.

AREA: 3,000 square feet