Ver-Tex Helps Brighten Historic Harvard Dormitories

We’ve said it before: all of Harvard’s facilities adhere to a high standard of excellence that matches the prestige and acclaim of their institution. Previously, Ver-Tex Construction worked with Harvard University and Lee Kennedy on a project at the university’s business school campus.

At the Ruth Mulan Chu Chao Center, Ver-Tex installed approximately 40 Mecho manual clutch operated shades and 115 Mecho WhisperShade IQ2 intelligent motorized shades using Mecho’s proprietary EcoVeil PVC-free fabrics.

Once completed, our focus shifted from the business school to its main campus, where Ver-Tex worked on two separate large dorm renovations at Harvard’s Winthrop House. The first was Gore Hall. With Consigli Construction serving as the general contractor, this was a massive undertaking that included a renovation spanning over 100,000 square feet. We installed approximately 460 manual shades and 30 motorized shades on this project.

Gore Hall was just one piece of Harvard’s House Renewal Program, which seeks to create revitalized student living spaces, and social and academic areas. The second project, occurring nearly simultaneously on campus, was Standish Hall. Much like Gore Hall, this was a complete renovation of the 81,000 square foot. space. Lee Kennedy served as the general contractor. We installed approximately 265 manual shades on this project. In addition to shade installation, Ver-Tex Construction also supplied a number of miscellaneous specialties including wall protection, signage, lockers, FECs, toilet accessories, appliances, and bike racks.

Both Gore Hall and Standish Hall were built over a hundred years ago to house freshmen and will continue to be fine homes to Harvard’s student population for decades to come.

Ver-Tex Brightens Engineering Research Opportunities at Brown University

Did you know that Brown University has one of the oldest Ivy League engineering programs? Originally established in 1794 and located in Providence, RI, it is the seventh-oldest academic institution for higher education in the country. While Brown University has a strong legacy built on history and tradition, Brown University also looks towards the future, particularly in creating new educational opportunities for its students so they may learn, grow, and find solutions to some of the world’s most challenging issues.

The Brown University School of Engineering’s Engineering Research Center is one such opportunity, and Ver-Tex is very proud to have been part of this exciting project! Ground was originally broken back in Fall 2015 and the building was completed in Fall 2017.

The three-story, 80,000 sq. ft. space was built entirely from the ground up, featuring dedicated workstations for graduate students, cutting edge research labs, classrooms, conference rooms, and more. Shawmut Design & Construction served as General Contractor on the project and was designed by Philadelphia-based KieranTimberlake.

Ver-Tex installed approximately (50) Hunter Douglas manual shades and (60) Lutron Sivoia QS motorized shades on this project. The motorized shades included the Hyperion automation system from Lutron. This solar-adapting shade software can adjust shades throughout the day with the changing position of the sun, allowing for energy savings and reducing both glare and heat. Hyperion includes automated raising and lowering of the shades, based on location and building orientation.

The entire project adhered to the school’s Facility Design and Construction Standards and is built to fit LEED® Gold Certification. This certification means the building’s energy and performance goal is 25% better than the minimum criteria established in the Rhode Island-adopted International Energy Conservation Code.  

Upon completion, Brown University President Christina Paxson was quoted, “This building is a statement about the importance of engineering at Brown and also in the world at large.” It truly is an extraordinary space and we’re proud of the Ver-Tex team for doing such a fantastic job!