Extensive sustainability features incorporated in the design earned the building a LEED Platinum designation.
Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies (MACP) invested in a two-story office and one-story underground parking garage addition to an existing office building. Designed with unique balconies, conference rooms and exterior common areas, the space provides an inviting atmosphere for employees and guests. VAA provided advice throughout the extensive site selection process and contributed civil and structural engineering designs.
Designed as a highly sustainable facility, the site uses 19 water tanks to store about 55,000 gallons of rainwater and sustain the surrounding vegetation. This system is one of many sustainable design elements incorporated when renovating the exterior spaces around the office, including rain gardens, permeable pavers and the use of native plant species to minimize runoff and water use on the site. Coordinating with the external mechanical team, VAA’s civil design placed geothermal wells in the adjacent wetland to store heat generated in warmer months. A green roof and photovoltaic and solar thermal panels were also included in the design, earning the building a LEED Platinum designation.
To triple the size of the office space and support various sustainability features, the structural team selected a steel frame for the office structure. The framing accommodates large open spaces in the building interior, providing flexibility in MACP conference and event room layouts through the use of vertical folding partition walls. Additional structure was needed at the roof to support the solar panel array and the green roof space. The structural design of trellises, canopies and a sound barrier enhanced the building’s exterior spaces.
One of the unique elements of the interior design involved the installation of three totem poles. With the tallest of the set standing over 20 feet high, the totem poles required extensive coordination through installation in the fully constructed space.