The John J. Sbrega Health and Science Building at Bristol Community College, in Fall River, Massachusetts is the first building of its size, type, and energy use intensity to be designed to achieve zero net energy in the Northeast US. Accommodating multiple disciplines in the sciences and health professions, the building represents the translation of basic science to its application in the world.

Sbrega is conceived as a 'gateway' building, among the first that a visitor sees upon arrival to campus, and a signal of the vibrancy of the campus community. Landscape and building interlock to ground the building in its circumstance. Pavings run from outside to the interior. Open channels direct water from the roof into a system of infiltration basins and bioswales. Building walls emerge to become planters for climbing vines. A green roof planted with tufted grasses mitigates run-off. The building offers roof decks, terraces, and covered walkways, encouraging direct connections with the outdoors.

The instructional laboratories for biology, chemistry, nursing, clinical laboratory science, medical assisting, and dental hygiene, are organized and oriented around a two story atrium that serves as a student 'living room', which has become a campus hub, not only for those taking classes in the building, but for the broader community.


VIDEO (produced by Bristol Community College)

LEED Certification Level: Platinum

Awards: MA Department of Energy Resources, Leading by Example Award, 2014; American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers, Region 1 Award for Engineering Excellence, 2014; Community College Futures Assembly Bellwether Award Finalist, 2014; National Association of College and University Business Officers, Innovation Award, 2015; International Institute for Sustainable Laboratories, Go Beyond Award, 2016; Unilock Award of Excellence in Architectural Achievement, 2016; AIA COTE Top Ten Award, 2017; USGBC Green Building Market Leadership Award In Energy Efficiency, 2017; SCUP/AIA-CAE Excellence in Architecture for a New Building, 2018

Project credit: Sasaki (J. Moses, project designer/project architect)

Image credit: Edward Caruso Photography

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