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Sustainable village lays foundation for new building plan

By Kevin Cobble
On October 5, 2015

Students prepare the foundation for one of Kirkwood's new additions to the sustainable village. Photo by Keith Norem

The sustainable village at Kirkwood Community College’s main campus is expanding. 

According to Jim Off, construction management faculty, there are currently two completed buildings in the village. “One of them is a rooftop trainer for the energy production people. One of the buildings out there now is like a meeting room/conference room,” he said. 

This year, more buildings will be added to the village. “The one that we are working on now is a residential type building,” Off said. The current conference room will be permanent, while the other two buildings will be either sold or donated as small residential buildings, according to Off. “We would like to find another home for the other two buildings,” he said.  

Off said construction has been slower than expected, so they are implementing a new plan. “We are going to try to build in modules. So we will build small sections of the structure. There will be six different pieces we can put together later,” he said. 

Last summer, a structure for solar panels was built and Off said he would like to involve students taking courses that are not part of the Industrial Technology program. “We want to give our students practical experience,” he added.          Programs involved with the village include Industrial Maintenance, Electronic Engineering Technology, Plumbing, HVAC, Construction Management, Architectural Technology, Interior Design and Horticulture. 

“The whole project was made possible because of a donation from the Kirkwood Facilities Foundation. It put in the utilities that let us do the work out there. We have had a lot of donors and suppliers that give us discounted materials,” Off said.    

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