North Main’s new LEED-certified building

IMG_0832Neighbors got an in-depth look at the process and beautiful results of new “green building” techniques used to rehabilitate the new Home and Hospice Care of RI facility at 1085 North Main Street at our Tuesday evening  (May 26) preview tour. If you missed it, you may want to attend Home & Hospice Care’s public Grand Opening on Sunday, May 31 at 2PM.

Keith Davignon and Jamie Hughes of Vision 3 Architects and Greg Post and Greg Pezza of New England Construction showed how a careful use of recycled and low-impact materials, energy-efficient design and innovative technologies helped ensure that this building will be Rhode Island’s first LEED-certified medical facility when it opens for staff and patients in June.

Home and Hospice Care of Rhode Island provides end-of-life and bereavement care for terminally ill people and their families. The new building will provide private rooms for 24 patients and flexible space for  administrators and caregivers. H&HCRI staff also travel to homes, hospitals and nursing homes to care for about 400 patients in total at any time.

LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design, a certification program of the Green Building Council. LEED sets standards for the construction and long-term use of buildings that will minimize impact on global warming, air quality, water quality and use of natural resources. Projects earn points for everything from thick insulation to low-volatility paints and natural flooring materials. Although the application is still awaiting approval, Vision 3 and NEC are confident that they have earned a LEED Silver Certificate for Home and Hospice.

This project faced difficulties in meeting those standards because they inherited the existing building’s basic shape, orientation and relatively tight spaces for insulation within ceilings and walls. However, they earned extra points by recycling 92% of all demolition materials and using recycled materials for 12% of all new construction. High efficiency LED lights, operated by motion detectors reduce electricity use and the gas-fired heating and cooling system will be 28% more efficient that current building code requirments while allowing room-by-room climate control for patient rooms.

The project partners have transformed the former nursing home, which was an extremely plain brick box in a flat parking lot, into a stylish and warm modern building, thanks to creative use of sustainable materials, innovative interiors that curve and offset traditional “bowling alley” corridors. The building was designed for the comfort and compassionate care of terminally ill patents and their families, starting with the landscaped entrance off Second Street and continuing throughout. The new building has ample spaces where families be comfortable during a typical 7-day patient stay, including a kitchen, play room for kids, a library, outside patio and showers.

This project marks a tremendous addition and powerful example for new investments on North Main Street. Our thanks to Home and Hospice Care of RI Executive Director Diana Franchitto for arranging our tour. We’re very pleased to welcome Home and Hospice care to the neighborhood.

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