Located in a neighborhood lacking an architectural identity, the 60-year-old fire station is under-sized, under-equipped and cannot be renovated cost effectively. A new replacement station will double the size of the existing building, and have an immediate positive impact on the way the Fire Department provides services to its community.
The new facility displays muscular brick forms balanced with the decorative qualities of exposed structural beams and finely detailed solar shading devices. Wood-grain panels and large panes of glass complete the low-maintenance facades while bringing a defined sense of character to the site. A vegetated steel trellis invites visitors toward the public entry and creates an elegant backdrop for a public artwork installation.
Planned for LEED Gold certification, the station addresses energy use reduction in a number of ways, including solar water heating and a ground-source heat pump system. 28 geothermal wells, 250 feet deep, allow heat to be rejected or extracted from the earth, thus providing air conditioning and heating for the entire station. Energy models show that this new facility will reduce energy consumption by 35% compared to a baseline model.
The Architecture 2030 Challenge is a world-wide initiative to design all new buildings to be “carbon-neutral” by the year 2030; meaning no fossil fuel or greenhouse gas emitting energy is used in the operation of these facilities. The initiative has established performance standards for each year leading up to 2030, and the design of Dallas Fire Station #32 meets the current goal of 60% reduction of fossil fuel consumption.