In The News
June 2018  |  Cranston, RI
Building gets new lease on life

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Depression-era Virks Building Gets New Lease on Life
The Great Depression was one of the darkest times in American history, yet the era gave birth to some truly great architecture. President Roosevelt's famous Works Projects Administration (WPA) funded the construction of thousands of new buildings. One notable treasure, the now-called Dr. Johannes Virks building in Cranston, Rhode Island, has been carefully restored and is soon to be the State's new Health and Human Services Department.

Built in 1936, and after serving as the State Infirmary hospital for 78 years, the original building had fallen into serious decay. "We had to literally gut the entire interior of the building, but were proud to restore the building's exterior magnificent semi-circle split staircase and elegant Corinthian portico," says Jason Pannone of Bentley Builders, the GC on the project. "One thing we couldn't salvage was the windows. Even the sills had deteriorated in many cases, and there was no chance those old windows would meet any type of energy code."

Winco Window's Northeastern reps, True Enterprises, were ready to step in. They recommended Winco's 3250 Series Steel Replica windows, which are designed for historic applications, yet offer high performance energy efficiency. True Enterprises has been a dominant player in historic projects across the Northeast for 30 years.

n|e|m|d architects, inc. worked with True Enterprises on the windows. "Through our research efforts we determined that the Winco Steel Replica line was the most accurate in scale and profile to the original windows, and the performance meets or exceeds the current energy codes", says Timothy Kennedy the architect/project manager from n|e|m|d architects, inc. "We are very pleased with the end result and these replacement windows replicate the look of the originals remarkably well."

The Virks Building will provide the State with approximately 14,300 square feet of tenant space on each of its four main floors (57,200 square feet total). It is located within the Pastore Center, Cranston, RI, a group of historic buildings that are now being restored to house many of the Rhode Island government functions on one historic campus.


Virks Building Before Photos


Project Team:
Architects: n | e |m | d architects, inc., Providence, Rhode Island
Glazing Contractor: Don's Glass & Aluminum Fabricators, LLC
General Contractor: Bentley Builders, North Kingstown, Rhode Island
Windows: Winco Windows & True Enterprises, Old Saybrook, Connecticut



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