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Van Buren Land Port of Entry Wins Prestigious National Award

| Jessica Boisclair, Communications Specialist
Post filed in: Green Buildings  |  LPOEs  |  Public Buildings Service  |  Sustainability

The U.S. Land Port of Entry in Van Buren, Maine recently received the American Institute of Architects’ Honor Award, the profession’s highest acknowledgement.

Located on a bluff overlooking the St. John River in northern Aroostook County, the border station was one of 11 recipients to be recognized on January 15 for its excellence in architecture.

A beautiful example of the U.S. General Services Administration’s Design Excellence Program, the LPOE blends perfectly with its surrounding landscape, and provides “a modern contextual response to a small border town – pastoral and well scaled,” stated Jury Chair Josiah Stevenson, FAIA.

“For over twenty years, the Design Excellence Program has challenged today’s architects to design tomorrow’s legacy buildings that, first, provide efficient and economical facilities for the use of government agencies; and second, provide visual testimony to the dignity, enterprise, vigor, and stability of the American Government,” said Public Buildings Service Regional Commissioner Glenn Rotondo.

While the building’s design elegantly mirrors the forests and sunsets of Maine, the large glass windows set in the dark bronze aluminum walls permit excellent surveillance, as officers are able to monitor the site from various locations throughout the building.

Completed in 2013, the Z-shaped configuration of the building, two large canopies, and inspection booths shield staffers from the extreme weather conditions that can occur in northern Maine. The newly constructed port replaces an outdated and undersized facility that was damaged by flooding in 2008.

The Design Architect, Snow Kreilich Architects (formerly Julie Snow Architects) of Minneapolis, MN, submitted the LPOE for the award.

“We in Region 1 are proud of the legacy we have helped create – and proud of our project team led by John Maurer, and supported by Deb Fournier, Carl Dodge, and so many others,” said Rotondo. “We also applaud our colleagues in Region 9 for their Mariposa LPOE AIA Honor Award! These two projects are truly a testament to the value and enduring success of the Design Excellence Program.”

To learn more about GSA’s LPOEs, click here.