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Grand Rapids Downtown Market

By Hugh A. Boyd Architects and Progressive AE | Grand Rapids, Mich.

09/25/2014

The Grand Rapids Downtown Market is a bona-fide industry trailblazer. The LEED Gold project is one of the first urban markets in the country to receive certification and the first project in the country to receive USGBC’s Urban Agriculture credit (awarded to projects that improve human health and well-being, foster community involvement, and provide education on food production.) A certain amount of space must be allocated for growing, and the market has 6,500 square feet dedicated to gardens and a greenhouse.

In the early 1900s, Grand Rapids had one of the two largest farmers markets in the U.S. Now 100 years later, the downtown market once again positions the city to become a national leader in local food production and distribution.

The community effort that brought it to fruition involved a number of entities, including Grand Action, a not-for-profit organization that seeks to identify downtown building and revitalization projects. An abandoned historic property was eventually selected for this site.

“The entire property was effectively repurposed as part of a reclamation process designed to honor the past while making the best possible building for the future,” explained Craig C. Nicely, AIA, NCARB, practice leader and architect at the firm. “Our vision was to create a distinct architectural phenomenon as ambitious as the visionary concept for its use. The Downtown Market is a success on every level—a real signature property for the city and community.”

A 4,000-gallon rainwater harvesting tank provides irrigation for the facility’s greenhouse plants. Fifty geothermal wells surround the property as part of a heat pump system that accommodates two-thirds of its heating and cooling needs—“and will pay for itself in two years,” Nicely said. The project reused as much material as possible from former warehouses on the site.

“The massive wood beams of the original building—cut from prime, 200-year-old northern Michigan pine trees—were preserved and milled,” added Nicely. “Tons of concrete were recovered and pulverized on site to be reused for the paving base around the building.”

The $30 million project incorporates entrepreneur and experimentation space for both emerging and experienced food artisans and merchants. It also includes a 24-vendor market hall, large outdoor farmers market featuring 45 stalls underneath a canopy and atop heated sidewalks, and, coming soon, two full-service restaurants, one of which will be a micro-brewery.

Expected to attract 500,000 customers per year and generate 200 jobs at the market (and many more in the region), the Grand Rapids Market is a portrait of agritourism at its finest.

Bud Clark Commons
By Holst Architecture | Portland, Ore.

Sustainability at Bud Clark Commons meant creating an enduring place of dignity for Portland’s most vulnerable citizens. The project set a new standard by combining permanent supportive housing and temporary shelter with a community resource center.

SUNY-ESF's Gateway Center
By Architerra | Syracuse, N.Y.

Sustainability is a moving target—continuously evolving, and demanding that we forget what we once knew and learn something new. And the Gateway Center acts as a prominent professor of sustainability.

Grand Rapids Downtown Market
By Hugh A. Boyd Architects and Progressive AE | Grand Rapids, Mich.

The Grand Rapids Downtown Market is a bona-fide industry trailblazer. The LEED Gold project is one of the first urban markets in the country to receive certification and the first project in the country to receive USGBC’s Urban Agriculture credit (awarded to projects that improve human health and well-being, foster community involvement, and provide education on food production.)

IDEXX Laboratories' Synergy Center
By Lavallee Brensinger Architects | Westbrook, Maine

For IDEXX Laboratories, an international leader in pet healthcare, pursuing LEED certification for its $35 million Synergy Center was no walk in the park.

Stempel Complex
By Perkins+Will | Miami

With a need to bring together multiple academic and research programs for Florida International University's (FIU) Extreme Event Institute under one roof, Perkins+Will designed a technologically advanced building that is dedicated to hurricane-based research and academics: the Stempel Complex.

Ampersand
By Darling Associates | London

A landmark building inspired by both the past and future in London’s Soho neighbor- hood, Ampersand brings a sophisticated approach to design while integrating new features into its luxury residential units and high-spec offices.

America's Second Harvest of Coastal Georgia
By Sustainativity, Inc. | Savannah, Ga.

As a humanitarian and sustainability consultant who is passionate about green building, Tommy Linstroth was frustrated when he saw his philanthropic efforts go to waste.

Smith College's Bechtel Environmental Classroom
By Coldham & Hartman Architects | Whately, Mass.

What was once an astronomical observatory is now Smith College’s Bechtel Environmental Classroom at the Ada & Archibald MacLeish Field Station—a 2,500-square-foot, single-story, wood-framed building on a 233-acre forest and pasture property.

Argonne National Laboratory's Energy Sciences Building
By HDR Architecture | Lemont, Ill.

When designing a home for scientists who work toward some of the most significant findings of our time (advances in how the world consumes and conserves energy), there’s only one route to follow: that of transparency.

Back to Beyond LEED: Our Top 10 Projects for 2014 >>

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