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SILVER AWARD: John W. McCormack Post Office and Courthouse, Boston, Mass.

November 08, 2011 |

This 1933 Art Deco federal building, designed by Cram & Ferguson, was the site of many judicial decisions on New Deal legislation. In 1972 it was renamed for the former Speaker of the House from Boston.

The goal of the Building Team—led by local design firm Goody Clancy, with Weidlinger Associates (SE), Cosentini Associates (MEP), Suffolk Construction (GC), and Tishman Construction Corp. of Massachusetts (CM/PM)—was to achieve “world-class sustainable preservation” for the client, the U.S. General Services Administration, and major tenant, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.


John W. McCormack, Post Office and Courthouse, Boston, Mass.

Green Roof: Aluminum Framed Skylight, Architectural Glazing Technologies

Green Roof: Vermont Structural Slate, Vermont Slate

Green Roof: Dbr 50 Drainage Mat, Henry

Green Roof: No. 4 Filter Fabric, Henry

Green Roof: G100 Base Sheets, Henry

Green Roof: Np180 Fr Cap Sheets, Henry

Green Roof: Celotex Structodek High Density Insulation, Celotex

Non-Green Roof: Carlisle Sure Weld .060 Reinforced Tpo Roof System, Carlise

Non-Green Roof: 20 Oz. Freedom Gray Copper, Revere Copper

Interior Terrazzo: Hillyard Shine All Cleaner, Terrazzo Sealer, Hillyard

Bronze Entrance Doors: Ellison Bronze Balance Doors, Ellison

Interior Stone: Sure Klean Marble Poultice, Liquid Marble Cleaner, Gloss-N Guard Stone Polish, Prosoco

Interior Wood: Orange-Sol De-Soly It, Orange-Sol

Interior Wood: Mohawk Wax Wash Remover: Mohawk

Interior Wood: Lustersheen Wax, Lustersheen

Vestibule Foot Grilles: Safe Track, Mats Inc.

Interior Carpeting: Shaw Synthesis Iv, Carpet, Shaw Tile

Interior Carpeting: Atlas Positano Broadloom Carpet, Atlas

Interior Acoustical Ceilings: Armstrong 15/16” Prelude Glide System, Armstrong Optima Ceiling Tile System, Armstrong

Interior Aluminum Door Frames: Omega Aluminum Frames, Omega

Interior Wood Frames: Eggers Stile And Rail Doors, Eggers

Fire Rated Interior Door Glass: Firelite Plus Glass, Firelite

Interior Structural Glass: Prelco ½” Clear Satin Acid Etched, Prelco

Exterior Aluminum Window: Moduline Windows, Moduline

Exterior Window Glass: Cardinal Loe-366 Glass, Cardinal

The 701,896-sf, $160 million project took advantage of numerous green opportunities: 17,000 sf of green roofs, photovoltaics for pumping rainwater, green procurement, enhanced water efficiency, construction waste management, and improved indoor air quality. A new skylight brings light and views into the cafeteria. Marble paving was made from salvaged toilet stall partitions. All this resulted in LEED Gold certification.

Restored colors were chosen with paint analysis and clues from original drawings. “Every room was sensitively carried out, and the best features were focused on,” said Reconstruction Awards Judge Martha Bell, FAIA.

According to John Buckley, the GSA project manager, “This project has changed me. Investing in our historic buildings is something everybody should be looking very hard at.” BD+C

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