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North Mall Office Building

  • Address: 725 Summer Street, NE  Salem, OR  97301
  • Square footage: 105,000 
  • Tenant(s):  Department of Housing and Community Services, Oregon Parks and Recreation Department, Water Resources Department 
  • Year constructed: 2003

Building History

The North Mall Office Building was the “Pilot Project” under the Executive Order 00-07. The project offered a chance to study new methods and options for designing a more sustainable building.   
The Architect was Yost Grube Hall Architecture from Portland, Oregon and the General Contractor was Pence/Kelly Construction, Inc. from Salem, Oregon. Construction on the project began in April 2002 and ended in August 2003. The total construction cost was $20,750,000.  
Site Design
An existing drive crosses the site north of the Employment Building and provides surface parking for visitors near the entry.  Parking for employees is under the building reached from Winter Street.  Planters over the edge of the parking area form the base for the building.  These planters include storm water storage and treatment.  A small area over the parking entry contains an "eco-roof" that also stores and treats storm water.  A paved plaza provides public open space by the building.  A covered arcade gives access to the main entry and a link to Summer Street. A second major entry is provided from Winter Street.  Plantings were planned to direct access and fit with the Capitol Mall.  Special attention was given to selecting native plants requiring little water.
Building Exterior Design
The building has two major parts: a three-story segment running east and west and a two-story segment along Winter Street.  This arrangement allows the building to relate to the adjoining Employment Building and reduce height near the neighborhood.  The window layout and shading was refined based on computer modeling.  Each face is designed to enhance day lighting and reduce heat gain and glare.  Exterior materials and colors were chosen to blend with other Capitol Mall buildings.  Brick is used on the east and west facades, with light metal panels used on the north and south facades.  In some locations, the concrete structure is left exposed to reduce added finishes.
Building Systems
Structural, mechanical and electrical systems were reviewed to improve efficiency and sustainability.  Concrete columns, shear walls and concrete slabs are exposed to reduce finish materials and better use the thermal mass.  The mass helps reduce temperature swings and need for cooling.  Each of the three building zones has a fan system that is fed by the centralized cooling system.  Radiant heat along the outside walls is provided from a central boiler. Air is blown under floor through special outlets.  This method: reduces fan energy; reduces cooling needs; and allows some individual control.  Electrical power is routed under the floor to either systems furniture or floor boxes.  Materials and finishes have been reduced where possible.  Recycled content, local mining or manufacturing, and freedom from harmful chemicals were used to make material and design choices.
Sustainability Features
  • Houses from the site have been relocated north of Mill Creek
  • The adjoining Stiff-Jarman House will be restored and used as office space
  • Topsoil will be removed and stored for reuse on site
  • Plantings along Mill Creek will include native species 
  • Storm water planters and the "eco-roof" will improve storm water releases
  • Unshaded surfaces have been reduced as well as hard surfaces 
  • Exterior lighting reduces light pollution in the immediate area
Water Efficiency:
  • Efficient irrigation system that uses a non-potable source
  • Use-sensors are installed on lavatories and water-closets
Energy and Atmosphere:
  • Exterior and interior sunscreens reduce heat and glare while improving the quality of day light in the office spaces
  • The concrete structure is left exposed to help temper the interior
  • Reduced energy use due to efficient indirect and direct lighting for office areas
  • Under floor air conditioning allows more flexibility, reduced energy use, and individual control over flow and temperature 
  • The atrium space is naturally ventilated and uses waste heat to temper the space when needed
  • The building air can be purged at night to reduce heat build up from the day 
  • The air conditioning refrigerant is free of harmful chemical compounds
Materials and Resources:
  • Up to 75% of the construction waste will be recycled
  • Concrete will contain 10%-20% fly ash (a waste by-product) for structural concrete and 20% - 40% for paving
  • Steel and Aluminum will have a 50% recycled content
  • Acoustic ceiling tiles will contain 79% recycled wood fiber
  • Acoustic wall panels and partitions use a recycled paper board, covered with a fabric containing 100% recycled polyester
  • Gypsum wall board will have 100% recycled paper faces and gypsum from a local source
  • Rubberized asphalt membrane will have a 25% recycled content
  • Insulation will have a 25%-30% recycled content
  • Toilet partitions are made from 100% recycled plastic
  • Carpet tiles have recycled content and are recyclable
  • (8) Gothic-style street lamps will be salvaged and reused
  • A large portion of the systems furniture will be reused
  • Cement and aggregates will be locally mined and manufactured
  • Wood paneling, wood doors and casework are locally cut and milled
  • 50% of the wood for forming and shoring will be sustainably produced
Indoor Air Quality:
  • An Indoor Air Quality Plan will be developed for construction and post-construction
  • The building will be tobacco smoke free
  • The ventilation system uses higher fresh air rates and has carbon dioxide and humidity controls
  • Use of PVC (polyvinyl chloride) has been reduced
  • Odor-free asphalt products are used
  • Low volatile organic compounds containing products will be used
  • Foam insulation will be formaldehyde-free
  • Walk-off mats at entry points keep pollutants from entering building

Green Team

 The North Mall Office Building established a Green Team in the 2003 when the building opened.

Energy Conservation
The Department of Administrative Services (DAS) has designated its buildings as resource conservation zones. This means DAS works hard to save energy and water in its buildings, as well as ensure employees and tenants recycle to the best of their ability. The goal is to save taxpayer money and care for the environment to the greatest extent possible.
Energy Savings Report
  DAS compares all bills to the calendar year 2000 as a baseline.  The goal and OAR require a 20 percent reduction in electricity and natural gas usage by 2015. DAS does not adjust the buildings without baseline adjustments for weather or any other factors. The savings column represents the combined electric and gas savings in Btu’s compared to the year 2000 usage. The Energy Cost column includes the totals for electric and gas – not all utilities.   
The North Mall Office Building's energy use is under evaluation and won't be posted until a revised baseline can be established. This is due to the fact it was not constructed until after the state's 2000 baseline.

Electricity Scorecards
The quarterly scorecard provides a quick report on electricity reductions, compliance with the 20 percent reduction target, recent night audit results, and tips for conservation. Here are the scorecards for the building.

Night Audits
 As part of the effort to conserve resources, DAS conducts quarterly night audits of the buildings. They walk through the spaces to ensure that lights, appliances, and equipment remains off during unoccupied times. Here are the results of the audits for the building.

August 2009 
February 2010 - A 
February 2010 - B 
February 2010 - C 


 The manner in which we travel to and from the building impacts sustainability and greenhouse gas emissions. The following summarizes the sustainable transportation options around the building.
Bike Routes

Certifications or Awards
The following summarizes the recognition received for the building:
  • EarthWISE certification from Marion County. This is a designation for organizations who commit to observe environmentally-friendly practices in their facilities
  • LEED Gold - awarded in 2004