Construction Underway on Green Blue Cross HQ in Providence

The Providence skyline is headed for change now that construction has commenced on the new 13-story headquarters for Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Rhode Island. The 327,000-square-foot building, designed by the architectural firm of Symmes Maini & McKee Associates, will be a study in sustainable design with an anticipated LEED Silver certification. BCBSRI’s new home will be located downtown at Waterplace Park, just across from a commuter rail station. SMMA worked with the healthcare concern to determine the best location for the new facility, which will sit adjacent to two new residential properties in a burgeoning mixed-use area. When all is said an done, the headquarters building will encompass Class A office space, a 3,400-square-foot raised-floor data center, a customer call center and training rooms, in addition to a fitness center and café. An underground parking facility reserved for employees with gas/electric hybrid vehicles, and ground-level retail space–to be built by Intercontinental Real Estate Corp.–has been incorporated into the design, as well. SMMA, well known for its expertise in state-of-the-art sustainable solutions, created a building design featuring insulated glass curtain walls, as well as two green vegetated roofs to decrease heat gain and manage storm water runoff that will be collected to assist in cooling data center equipment. Dimeo Construction is the contractor on the headquarters project, which is scheduled to reach completion in early 2009. With offices in Providence and Cambridge, Mass., SMMA has been providing architecture, engineering, planning and interior design services to corporate, technology and institutional clients for more than five decades.