In 2019, The Ecology School broke ground on its new campus at River Bend Farm in Saco, Maine. Upon completion, The Ecology School will become the most sustainable building in the Northeast following “Living Building Challenge” guidelines, the first one of its kind to be constructed here in Maine.
Hancock Lumber is proud to be supplying the building materials on this special project in Saco! The new campus will include a 9,000 square-foot dormitory and 7,000 square-foot dining commons, using more than 200,000 board feet of local Maine wood. According to the school, everything used during the construction process is “live what you learn” educational assets built to the specifications of The Living Building Challenge 3.1 certification, the world’s most rigorous building performance standard.
The Ecology School shared an update on their project in early March, highlighting the first wall panel raised on the site. These panels–built in our own manufacturing shop in Windham–are made from FSC Certified wood, a designation for wood that has been harvested from forests that are responsibly managed, socially beneficial, environmentally conscious, and economically viable.
Last week, roof trusses were installed on the north wing of the Norma Harrison dormitory. Hancock Lumber’s roof and floor truss manufacturing company, Mainely Trusses, made all of these at their manufacturing facility in Fairfield, Maine. All of the trusses also comply with the rigorous Living Building Challenge requirements.
“Our partnership with Hancock Lumber to support our River Bend Farm campus construction project has allowed us to locally source sustainable wood products for our Living Building Challenge dormitory and dining commons buildings. Hancock Lumber’s FSC-certified (Forest Stewardship Council) Eastern White Pine from right here in Maine keeps business local, investing in Maine’s forest economy, and reducing the carbon footprint of these construction materials. With all of our wall panels coming from the Hancock Lumber panel shop in Windham and all of our trusses coming from Mainely Trusses in Fairfield, The Ecology School’s new buildings will truly be “Hancock Lumber Made in Maine!” Because of industry leaders like Hancock Lumber, The Ecology School’s new campus at River Bend Farm will be some of the most sustainable buildings in the Northeast.”
-Drew Dumsch, President & CEO, The Ecology School
In late March, the school announced they are the first in the world to demonstrate Living Community Challenge Vision and Master Plan Compliance, a hard-earned step in the process of becoming a Living Community. In addition to the dormitory and dining commons currently under construction, the comprehensive plan outlines the future vision for The Ecology School’s entire campus.
In addition to Hancock Lumber, green building partners involved in making the new campus possible include Kaplan Thompson Architects, Briburn, Scott Simon Architects, Richardson & Associates, ReVision Energy, and Zachau Construction.