SmartSpace School Building

Project Overview

  • Location: Lincoln, MA
  • Building Size: 1,262 sq. ft.
  • Start Date: October 2006
  • Completion Date: November 2006
  • Building Partners: Triumph Modular - Dealer Partner, Architectural Resources Cambridge - Architect, The Hickory Consortium - Energy Performance Analysis

Project Summary

What began as the Portable Classroom Design Challenge initiated jointly by the Montgomery County Public Schools (MCPS) in Maryland and the USGBC, soon took on a life of its own when it moved from the winning Design boards to the NRB plant floor, with a proto-type aptly named SmartSpace. The first of its kind, the new SmartSpace School building took only six weeks to build, and less than a week to completely install and commission.

SmartSpace buildings can be ready to go in as little as half the time of their conventionally built counterparts. Building construction off-site occurs simultaneously with on-site development and that results in a significantly shorter construction schedule. In a world where sustainability is gaining momentum each day, building off-site in a controlled environment and shorter overall schedules can mean less site disturbance and construction pollutants for our environment – not to mention better safety and security for the day to day business.

The SmartSpace “Premier” Classroom design, as built for The Carroll School, transforms LEED® principles into building practices. Eco-friendly; healthy; energy-efficient, these three key elements of sustainability are combined to create a better building envelope. Characteristics include the strength and non-combustibility of recycled steel, a blanket of rigid insulation providing thermal protection that not only moves the dew-point away from the wall and roof cavity, but exceeds ASHRAE standards. Other materials used such as recycled carpet and MDF wallboard, or strategies implemented that consider renewable resources such as FSC certified plywood and bamboo all work together for a more environmentally responsible design package.

Optimized ventilation, C02 sensors, materials that are formaldehyde-free or have low to no VOC’s; and better natural day lighting help to make the environment a healthier, more productive place to be.

High efficiency, ducted HVAC unit with occupancy sensors and energy recovery systems works in tandem with superior lighting control sensor systems that balance the infusion of natural lighting through sun tunnels with efficient artificial lighting to reduce energy consumption. TPO “Energy Star” white roofing and insulated low E glass windows with sun-shades, work to reflect or temper solar heat gain.

An Energy Performance analysis completed by The Hickory Consortium in Harvard MA, compared the SmartSpace design to a similar building that just meets Massachusetts Energy Code, and also to a building that meets the ASHRAE standard. In short summary, various findings included:

“Due to better insulation, windows, day-lighting, C02 controlled energy recovery ventilation, and higher efficiency equipment, this building will save approximately 54% of the energy cost in comparison to the stricter ASHRAE 90.1-2004 standard.”

“There is also a 68% reduction in heating energy consumption, and a 49% reduction in cooling energy. Lighting energy is reduced by 80% relative to the code building.”

“Given the sterling performance of 54% energy savings, this building qualifies for all 10 (LEED®) energy efficiency points.”

“In summary, the (SmartSpace) Green Classroom has all the attributes of a well-integrated design which considers materials, energy and the environment. For a modular commercial school building, this attention to detail and multiple operational characteristics promises to produce remarkable energy, health and environmental performance.”

SmartSpace technology is a result of flexibility and innovation – a unique blend of architectural expression and modular methodology brought together to create custom, quality space with eye-appeal, and all with the permanence and performance of conventional construction. All SmartSpace buildings are customized, and can contain as many architectural features and finishes, and as many green elements as the client wishes to adopt.

You can take a peek inside the SmartSpace Classroom yourself