Launch Slideshow

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Rebels with a cause

Rebels with a cause

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    In the lobby, countertops, porcelain tile, and ceiling tiles contain recycled material. The wood on the walls is sustainably harvested, in accordance with standards set by the nonprofit Forest Stewardship Council (www.fscus.org). From left, Public Works Director William Hadley, HKT Architects Project Manager Michael Lawrence, and HKT Architects Principal Janet Slemenda. Photo: Gerry Evelyn/Evelyn Images

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    The Samuel Hadley Public Services Building contains more than 1,500 square feet of meeting space where neighborhood groups and other members of the public can gather. Residents also pay their water bills and pick up recycling bins at the facility. Photo: HKT Architects Inc.

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    Though the new facility provides 35% more office, storage, and shop space, the 9.6-acre site has 8% — or about an acre — more green space than before. A picnic area is available for the public, as is a water bubbler for dogs and their owners. Photo: CTA Construction Inc.

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    The employee corridor acts as a transition from the operations area to the administration building. A skylight and a curtain wall on each end mitigate the need for artificial light. Photo: CTA Construction Inc.

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    Exterior sunscreens positioned above the windows of the administration building reduce summer solar heat gains and maximize winter sunlight. Photo: HKT Architects Inc.

THE EVOLUTION OF A FLOOR PLAN

In January 2006, the Samuel Hadley Public Services Building design team began assessing the various elements of the new public services facility for Lexington, Mass.

The 9.6-acre campus is surrounded on two sides by homes, raising siting and vehicle circulation issues. Other considerations included:

  • Initial, lifecycle, and maintenance costs
  • Impact on operational productivity
  • Employee safety.
  • Looking at these factors helped the team — comprised of HKT Architects Inc., Weston & Sampson Engineers Inc., RW Sullivan Engineering, The Bioengineering Group Inc., Weidlinger Associates Inc., and Advanced Storage Technology Inc. — develop a holistic design with low initial cost and high return on investment.

    The process started with a programming phase to determine space requirements for the building. The design team interviewed future occupants — public works, school facilities, town management, and town engineering employees — to determine what would be needed in required spaces.

    The team then analyzed rooms and occupants' desired sizes against industry standards, and revised accordingly. Room data sheets were reviewed and revised by the occupants.

    Below is a step-by-step description of how the room data sheets evolved into final floor plans.

    Room data sheets

    These are basically performance specifications: size and function of the space (audio-visual equipment; furnishing requirements), building system requirements (types of walls, floors, ceilings; HVAC; electrical and lighting), and adjacencies (which rooms should be close to each other).




    Administration area bubble diagram Facility bubble diagram

    The next step is arranging these spaces most logically. In the first diagram, the public physically accesses several departments but sees almost all of them (indicated by the broken yellow circle) from the lobby. The second diagram places the first one within “administration/operations” to show its relationship to the entire facility. Once future occupants approved the diagrams, they became the backbone of the floor plans, which were flushed out with details from the room data sheets.



    Finalized floor plan

    Detailed information about both the administration and facility spaces: an obvious entrance/exit for the public, secure off-hour public access areas, and a separate employee entrance with easy access to main public works operational spaces.