Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts - Center for Science and Innovation

Building Enclosure Commissioning
North Adams, MA

The Division of Capital Asset Management and Maintenance (DCAMM) engaged Gale as the building enclosure commissioning agent for Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts’ new Center for Science and Innovation. The project included new biology, environmental, chemistry, physics and psychology classrooms and laboratories. In addition to the main classrooms, support space was provided including chemical storage, animal holding areas, and a greenhouse. The project achieved a LEED Silver rating and included micro wind turbines, photovoltaics, and a green roof garden.

Gale performed two peer reviews of the exterior building enclosure and met with DCAMM and the project architect to review details and specifications. Gale’s services included:

  • Submittal peer review
  • Construction coordination meetings
  • Mock-up reviews and testing
  • Periodic construction monitoring
  • Enclosure testing (including air and water infiltration testing of the fenestration, air testing of the air barrier system, and infra-red scanning of the exterior enclosure)

The project was originally envisioned as a standard stick-build construction but changed during construction to a panelized wall assembly. Due to the geometry of the building, Gale raised concerns with the ability of the contractor to provide a panelized wall assembly that would meet the performance of the original design. The team visited the panel manufacturer’s plant, attended several review meetings, and observed testing of the proposed wall panels. After several mock-up installation issues and failed mock-up testing, the contractor reverted to a panelized back-up wall assembly with filed installed insulation and claddings.