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August 02, 2011

Roch. contractor's science center work gets coverage

Just noticed this morning that longtime Rochester builder - Alvin E. Benike, Inc. - was spotlighted in a long article on the Concrete Contractor Cascademeadowsbanks2 website.

Written by Kimberly Schmitt, the piece focuses on the Green building practices and sustainability that came into play with Benike's construction of the Cascade Meadows Wetlands and Environmental Science Center off of Rochester's 19th Street Northwest.

That's a project that I watched develop through its completion in November.

As the project manager, Mike Benike was quoted throughout.

Here's a little from the story:

When it came to the project, all of the decisions were based on energy and water conservation. "There was a lot of discussion about the envelope, and what type of materials to use," Benike says. "And the No. 1 goal of the building envelope was energy efficiency. We used an integrated design process, but ICFs (Insulating Concrete Forms) and SIPs (Structural Insulated Panels) were at the heart of the discussion."

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Cascademeadowsbanks1 Since the project site was a wetland, it can only be restored. As a result, restoration of a man-made lake took place, and aggregate from the lake was used as fill for the building and sold to a nearby ready mix plant.

Because concrete was chosen as a building material for a significant amount of the project, they had the opportunity to use some of the aggregate for other areas of the project. "The aggregate came out of the lake and was shipped to a ready mix plant a mile away," Benike says. "Then, it was shipped back to the site and used in the walls.

Since I have trouble building with Legos, let alone using real tools, I really understand very little of what Mike has to say in the article.

But it sounds impressive. Heh.

To read the full thing yourself, go here.

And thanks to Rochester photographer Josh Banks for the construction pics of the center. His pics are like a million times better than mine, so I think everyone appreciates it when I use his photos.

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