Friend’s School of Portland in Maine featuring INTUS Eforte triple pane steel reinforced polymer windows

More than its airy classrooms, wooded trails or expansive windows, the greatest advantage at the new Friends School of Portland will be what the building lacks: utility bills.

When construction is completed this summer, the Friends School of Portland will become the first school in Maine to attain a rigorous set of building efficiency standards, known as “passive house” status, that means it will be able to dispense with nearly all of its energy costs. Instead, it will rely on a combination of solar power, modern heating techniques and construction methods so tight that the body heat generated by the school’s 120 occupants was factored into the design.

The roughly $2.5 million school project is the result of three years of fundraising by school boosters and two years of planning by architects and designers. The result will be an angular 15,500-square-foot structure with half a dozen classrooms, art and music space, administrative offices and, for the first time, a large, indoor area to host the school’s Quaker meetings. <…>


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