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Permeable paver: parking maintains 100-year-old look in adaptive reuse project

August 21, 2009

The designers of the Luray Train Depot, home of Luray-Page County Chamber of Commerce, renovation in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia set out to repurpose the building into a visitor’s center with two goals in mind: (1) refit a 100-year-old building with materials that would be in keeping with the original and (2) do it in a way that was as environmentally sensitive as possible. FPW Architects and Dink’s Construction teamed up using water-permeable pavers to achieve both goals.

Luray depot BEFORE rennovation.

Luray depot BEFORE renovation.

The new Depot and Chamber of Commerce office.

The new Depot and Chamber of Commerce office.

The pavers visually tie the old building with its surroundings and provide a good match with some pavers that have been used on the site since the building was built a century ago.

From an environmental standpoint, the pavers are part of a larger stormwater management system, which carries water away from the building and filters it into the groundwater. The pavers themselves are among the most sustainable building materials available.

Installer, Carroll Keller, owner of Dink’s Construction, Harrisonburg, Virginia, installed the pavers, as well as a stormwater management system for a hardscape that is as beautiful as it is practical. Color contrasting pavers were installed as lines for parking spaces, instead of painting the lines directly on the pavers.

David Puckett, president of FPW Architects, Charlottesville, VA, designed the project. “We needed a permeable paving surface to solve a storm water run-off issue and initially we had been looking at a permeable asphalt system, but were concerned about the long term performance and maintenance,” says Puckett. “The water-permeable pavers provided excellent system performance, ease of maintenance and was much more compatible visually with the historic depot building.

“The ability to ‘inlay’ the parking lot stripes and handicapped access symbol was
‘icing on the cake.'”

Keller says he is getting more requests for water-permable products in landscaping projects.

The project is featured in Total Landscape Care. Read the article here.

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