In 2011 Fitzpatrick Architects began designing a new office building for Wood County Electric Cooperative – the primary electric supply company for Wood County, Texas. Although located in a small town of only about 1,900 (Quitman), the new COOP building has made an enormous impact. The building, with its contemporary design and bold colors, is easily seen when entering town along Texas state highway 37, and immediately serves as a focal point when entering town.
Bryan Ziegler, who grew up in Quitman, was the engineer for the site design on the project. Since the project was a renovation to an existing site, it presented many challenges. It was imperative that electrical service to all WCEC customers remain undisturbed during the construction of the new building. Therefore, the existing office was left fully operational during construction of the new building. One of the primary challenges in the design was that as the new building was nearing completion, utilities had to be connected to the new facility without disrupting the old. The connections of these new utilities were carefully coordinated with the contractor in a way that didn’t alter operation of either facility.
Another challenge faced in the project was the careful phasing of construction of new parking areas around the site. The demolition of old parking areas, and construction of new ones were meticulously planned so traffic into and out of the site worked very well throughout the course of the work.
Although a challenging project, this new building stands as a testament to the growth and advancement of Quitman. We hope this project is a sign of many more exciting things to come from this small, rural community.
(NOTE: This project completed by Bryan Ziegler while he worked outside the umbrella of Aqueous Engineering.)
TEAM:Fitzpatrick Architects (Architect; Tyler) Jackson Construction (General Contractor; Quitman)