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Lenfest Center
November 10, 2013 8:00 AM CST

Archer & Buchanan’s Land Preserve Center wins design award

Chester County structure lauded for composition & detail


Archer & Buchanan Architecture, Ltd., an award-winning residential and institutional design firm, is pleased to announce that its Natural Lands Trust conservation center has been honored by the Society of American Registered Architects, Pennsylvania Council. Located within the ChesLen Preserve of Chester County, Pennsylvania, the new Lenfest Center is a base of operations for Natural Lands Trust’s management of the preserve and a comfortable public space for visitors.

The jury of design professionals cited the project’s “well thought-out site plan,” “very good composition,” and “well-integrated details,” scoring it high in Presentation, Program Solution, Site & Space Planning, Overall Design, and Solution & Aesthetic categories. Architect Daniel G. Russoniello, Principal of Archer & Buchanan, and project manager Matthew Forsythe accepted the award at a ceremony on Sept 12th at the Marriott Courtyard Philadelphia Downtown.

“We’re pleased that the judges appreciated the building’s scale, character, natural materials and connection to Chester County’s agrarian heritage,” said Russoniello. “Our goal was to create a structure that complements the woods and fields of the preserve and is still a hard-working, efficient and beautiful facility.”

Nestled into the side of a slope within 1,263 acres of dense woods and wildflower meadows, the 9,300-sf, two- story LenFest Management and Preserve Center supports outdoor educational programs for community and environmental groups as well as shelter, shade and public accommodations for visitors. Sustainable features include ground-coupled geothermal heating and cooling, high-efficiency lighting, low flow and waterless plumbing, rain gardens and recycled construction materials originally from the site. The new facility provides offices, meeting rooms and a kitchenette for preserve staff, and storage and maintenance areas for preserve equipment.

The ChesLen Preserve was established in 2007 as a result of a land donation by philanthropists Gerry and Marguerite Lenfest, whose support also made the Lenfest Center possible. Formerly a mushroom field, the preserve includes several miles of the Brandywine Creek. Natural Lands Trust, the region’s foremost conservation organization, protects the forests, fields, wetlands and streams that are essential to the sustainability and quality of life in eastern Pennsylvania and southern New Jersey.

The project was led by the design team of Archer & Buchanan Architecture, Ltd. with Keast & Hood Co. structural engineers; Bruce E. Brooks & Associates m/e/p engineers; SITE Engineering Concepts civil engineers; and Jonathan Alderson landscape architects.

About the Author

Archer & Buchanan Architecture, Ltd. is an award-winning architecture firm known for timeless design, attention to detail and exquisite craftsmanship.


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