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- Mercy Corps
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When international disaster and poverty relief nonprofit Mercy Corps decided to move to a new corporate office in Portland, Oregon, community good was never far from the organization’s mind. The Parker-Scott building, originally built in 1879, was selected for renovation and expansion to help inject life into an area that had battled issues with crime and homelessness for several years.
A main challenge with any historical renovation for a client wanting to implement sustainable systems into the resulting space is striking the right balance in maintaining the structure’s aesthetic without sacrificing performance. Glumac’s MEP engineering team focused on several passive solutions to mitigate the need for invasive systems that would jeopardize the building’s look and decrease long-term operational costs. Operable windows bring in fresh, cool air to condition the space in the summer months. This is further optimized by the staircase at the heart of the building also acts as a ventilation stack, drawing air up through the entire building. CO2 sensors automatically manage the mechanical ventilation system to reduce unnecessary usage. Additionally, low-flow fixtures and graywater harvesting and reuse systems lowered the facility’s potable water use by 50%.
Glumac’s energy group created an energy analysis for the project, which helped determine decisions regarding the building envelop, daylighting measures and helped integrate a 79 kW photovoltaic array that further reduces the facility’s energy needs. Once completed, the Mercy Corps headquarters achieved LEED Platinum certification.
Size: 80,000 sf
Project Cost: $37 million
Contractor: Walsh Construction
Owner: Mercy Corps