Superfund site warehouse gets new life as a green visitors' center
A Cincinnati-based team of Megen Construction Co. and Glaserworks Architecture is turning what was once a warehouse on a former Superfund cleanup site into a green visitors' center for the new Fernald Preserve, 18 miles northwest of Cincinnati. The 1,050-acre site was home to a uranium processing facility that supported the U.S. weapons program from 1952 until 1989. A $4.4 billion environmental cleanup project converted the site into a nature preserve now operated by the U.S. Department of Energy's Office of Legacy Management.
The 10,800-sf, $3 million adaptive-reuse project broke ground in December. Designed to achieve LEED Gold certification, the visitors' center will feature occupancy sensors, dual-flush toilets, low-flow plumbing fixtures, low-VOC finishes, a bio-wetland on the site that will process all the building's wastewater, and a geothermal heating and cooling system that will reduce energy consumption by 48% based on current utility costs.
The visitors' center is scheduled to open in summer 2008.