The 79-unit affordable housing project is sited in the heart of Center City close to services and public transportation. In order to maximize energy, resource conservation and indoor air quality, green features were integral to all facets of the design. The green roof not only absorbs typical rainfalls but also provides a great setting for the rooftop terrace. Connelly House is tracking to become the first LEED Silver high-rise supportive housing facility in Philadelphia.
While providing 59 affordable apartments for older adults, BWA’s design incorporated many sustainable features. The 14,000 square-foot vegetative roof responds to difficult site conditions and stormwater management goals. Other ecological features include the use of Energy Star® rated appliances; energy-efficient lighting and HVAC systems; water-conserving bathroom fixtures, and highly-insulated exterior walls.
The BWA design preserves the historic character of both the interior and street facades. Comprehensive envelope upgrades include perimeter insulation followed by replacement of historic interior finishes, new insulating windows with historically accurate profiles, clay tile roofing, stucco and masonry restoration and restoration of the metal bays and balustrades. Complimenting the historic features are all new energy-efficient building systems, sprinklers, new kitchens and bathrooms, and the construction of accessible apartments.
The Visitor Center, expanded to 23,000 sq. ft., includes a renovated 250 seat auditorium, a museum, larger lobbies and orientation areas, educational and events space, an artifact conservation and storage area, a bookshop, new restrooms, and entirely new building systems. The HVAC systems will employ geothermal, using extraction and injection wells. Standing at the edge of the Delaware River floodplain, all site work had to be designed with extra care, including expanded parking, two new entry terraces, more generous school bus drop-off areas, re-landscaping, pedestrian paths, extensive stormwater management measures and a reforestation program for nearby eroded stream and pond banks.
The Post Learning Commons at St. Joseph’s University, Philadelphia, PA
Even when LEED certification is not a specific goal, we make every effort to design sustainably, often using the LEED scorecard criteria. The design fares well by those standards, with energy-efficient lighting, equipment and HVAC with economizers, use of lighting occupancy sensors, extensive use of daylighting, a thermally efficient building envelope, indoor air quality design, low-flow bathroom fixtures with automated controls, full building commissioning, construction waste recycling, selection of finishes and products that are sustainable and/or have high-recycled content, a rain garden, stormwater recharge
designs, green walls, a green roof and extensive plantings.