Built in 1891 and moved to a new foundation at its current location in 1911, the Middlebury depot served as a Rutland Railway passenger and freight station until the late 1950s and is a contributing structure to the Middlebury Village Historic District. Fifty years after the end of its life as an active railroad station, careless additions by successive retail operations and years of deferred maintenance had turned this classic late Victorian style station into a drafty eyesore. The adjacent business owners who purchased the property wanted to return the building to its former beauty and usefulness with the goal of creating attractive, marketable office space on a very modest budget. Awards of state and federal tax credits and a USDA energy grant allowed us to expand the scope of the project to include a significant energy retrofit along with the preservation and restoration of historic interior and exterior details.
The design solution worked within the historic structure of the building to maintain as much open interior space as possible at the public side of the building while also keeping systems simple and affordable. We added new walls and framing where necessary to support the tower and roof and provide service spaces for a modern office. Energy modeling, envelope improvements, and daylighting strategies guided the design process.