Patrick: New Building Will Set Benchmark

State and local officials today broke ground on the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife’s $25 million new field headquarters at 80 North Drive, off Route 135.

Massachusetts’ first zero net energy state office building “will set a benchmark for energy efficient office buildings” when it opens in Westborough in 2014, Gov. Deval Patrick said today.

State and local officials today broke ground on the Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and Wildlife’s $25 million new field headquarters at 80 North Drive, off Route 135.

The 45,000-square-foot facility will replace the 12,000-square-foot Richard Cronin Building, as well as three trailers,  serving about 90 employees, the Patrick administration noted in a press release.

Patrick called Massachusetts “a leader in the nation in clean energy and energy efficiency.”

“Once this building is up and running, it will on an annual basis produce as much energy on site from clean renewable sources as it consumes,” he said.

The project will bring engineering and construction jobs to the area, Patrick said.

It also will be “a great new place to work and to learn about the conservation of our natural resources,” he said.

Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance Commissioner Carole Cornelison said the building will be “a venue for the demonstration of sustainable building techniques and practices.”

“When the public visits the facility, they’ll have an opportunity to learn about how the building operates with renewable resources and with utmost respect for the environment,” Cornelison said.

The project “will demonstrate how we can plan, design, construct and more importantly maintain environmentally responsible facilities for the Commonwealth,” she said.

“This is going to be a model for us to strive for for all of our projects as we continually build more sustainability for the future,” she said.

The facility will consist of “45,000 square feet of office, laboratory and meeting space and feature a geothermal heating and cooling system, solar panels, innovative mechanical systems,” the Patrick administration said in a press release.

“The new facility will accommodate 120 employees, allowing MassWildlife to relocate its Hunter Education program staff from a small office in Ayer when the new building is completed in the spring of 2014. Employees from DFG’s Office of Fishing and Boating Access will also be relocated into the new facility,” the press release says.

“The building will produce all of its annual energy needs through a 294 kilowatt rooftop solar panel array. Energy needs have been driven down to levels approximately 60 percent below on other buildings of this type through the design of a high-performance exterior building envelope, and the use of energy efficient heating and cooling systems, including a closed-loop geothermal well system, radiant ceilings, and outside-air ventilation with heat recovery.”

Town Manager Jim Malloy called the project “a positive image for the town, because it’s a net-zero energy building. It’s leading the state.”


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