Marc, today's charrette was terrific. Thank you for your truly generous collaboration. You've caused me to turn a mental corner. Until recently, I thought that that to do really intelligent buildings, we'd need the right clients, the right engineers, and a premium budget. Thanks to you, I now believe that to do intelligent buildings all we need is INTELLIGENCE!—and the guts to ask the simple questions until we get the answers, and the courage of our convictions to persuade others...

We can do this and it will change things. You've empowered us. Thanks. –Ellen


Plainfield, NH School Prototype Classroom

Designed and implemented by the Plainfield School Facilities Committee

The 35,000 sf K-8 Plainfield School was built in three portions in 1972, 1989, and 2000. The school has issues with energy use, wide temperature swings, indoor air quality, excessive mechanical system noise, and envelope decay. The mechanical distribution system in most of the school is beyond its useful service life. Rather than simply replacing the mechanicals, the Committee advocated an integrated approach that would address energy use, comfort, air quality, durability, and noise. One corner classroom in the 1989 wing was superinsulated with R-12 slab edge insulation, R-45 walls, and Serious Materials R-6 quad-glazed fiberglass windows. Exterior cladding is local T&G pine over Homeslicker over housewrap. The attic air sealing and insulation upgrade had been previously accomplished. The existing unit ventilator was replaced with a single zone Mitsubishi cold climate minisplit heat pump and a Renewaire EV200 enthalpy recovery ventilator with CO2 demand control delivering air via a perforated fabric duct. Meters track electrical usage by the heat pump and ERV, and dataloggers are recording interior temperature and relative humidity and CO2 levels, as well as outdoor temperature.  Half year data (Jan 8th - June 18th 2010) leads to the projection that the heating energy will be less than or equal to the lighting energy (347 kWh during that time period, 3576  HDDs). The room is quiet and has fresh air and stable temperatures. Plainfield voters approved a bond issue in March 2010 to extend this approach to the rest of the 1989 wing.

Plainfield Prototype Classroom slides (PDF - 2 MB)