River Valley Co-op Honored with Two Design Awards

River Valley Co-op

Northampton, MA – Thomas Douglas Architects announced that its design for a building for the River Valley Co-op’s new Easthampton location recently received a Merit Award and the People’s Choice Award from the Western Massachusetts Chapter of the AIA.

The building was designed to celebrate the store’s values and commitment to strengthening the connections between consumers and the rich network of local and organic products in the Pioneer Valley.

The design optimizes energy efficiency and locally sourced materials. Indoor and outdoor dining spaces, including a space for food trucks, are designed to emphasize community. “The River Valley Co-op is an important contributor to the well-being of our community. We wanted to give them a building that balances the operational needs of a grocery store with the warmer and human-scaled elements that create a place where people want to spend time,” stated Project Architect and Principal Thomas Douglas. “We’re honored our colleagues have recognized the design excellence of this project.”

Working Collaboratively with the Co-op, Tighe & Bond Engineers, Wright Builders, and the rest of the project team, Thomas Douglas Architects was able to achieve the client’s energy goals, design goals, and a path to North America’s first Net-Zero-electric grocery store. The design team implemented energy modeling early in the design to evaluate alternatives, including HVAC systems, building envelope, and lighting systems for the proposed facility. Further enhancements to the HVAC systems include indoor air quality features, such as improved filtration, increased fresh air, and bipolar ionization air cleaning technology to address concerns relative to the COVID-19 pandemic. Current energy data indicates the facility’s energy consumption is very near what was projected.