522 Congress Street
Acquired 1993
1904 Beaux-Arts design
Formerly the Porteous, Mitchell, and Braun department store
Size: 148,000 sq. ft.

In 1996, the Porteous Building was selected as one of only 24 projects in the country to participate in the inaugural Energy Star Showcase Building program by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. In addition to preserving an historic building, MECA took an environmentally progressive approach to the Porteous Building renovation. Over 200 truckloads of debris removed from the building were recycled. Energy-efficient heating and lighting were installed to save energy and reduce pollution. Skylights were added to bring more natural light into the building.

One of the most important features of the Porteous Building is its state-of-the-art ventilation system. Custom-designed for each studio department, the ventilation system creates a healthy and safe environment for art-making for both students and faculty.

Croxton Collaborative architects of New York City served as environmental consultants to Porteous renovation architects Van Dam & Renner of Portland. Croxton designed the headquarters of the Audubon Society in Manhattan, which received national attention as a model of “green design.”