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

Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah) Tribal Headquarters

Architectural Design and Engineering: ARC Design Group

The Wampanoag Tribe of Aquinnah chose ARC Design Group (John Abrams, Marc Rosenbaum, Bruce Coldham) to design their first building after becoming a Federally recognized tribe and acquiring land. The building is superbly daylit and uses carefully selected materials to create a healthful and homey environment for tribal administration, services, and gatherings. All waste is treated with composting toilets and indoor planter beds. Heating energy the first year the building was occupied was about 500 gallons of fuel oil to heat an 8600 ft2 building. Water use averaged 25 gallons daily. Materials employed include ceramic tiles made from recycled automobile windshields; carpet made from recycled PET plastic bottles; old growth redwood salvaged from discarded beer and wine vats; old growth Douglas fir salvaged and re-manufactured from dismantled warehouse buildings; carpet underlayment made from compressed recycled newspapers; framing and sheathing materials which use wood by-products efficiently; doormats made from recycled truck tires; and toilet partitions made from recycled plastic.

This project helped create an invigorated sense of identity for tribal members. It fuses symbolism and materials from Wampanoag history with advanced environmental strategies.

Links to more information on the Wampanoag Tribal Headquarters