Join us for an inspiring conversation with architect Eric Coleman and Briget Solomon, CEO of Goodwill of the Great Plains, as they unveil the innovative design of the new Goodwill Adult Care facility in Sioux City, IA. Discover how this state-of-the-art facility is set to revolutionize care for adults while also achieving net-zero energy status. Learn about the incredible opportunities it will provide for the community and the benefits of sustainable design. Don't miss this insightful discussion on the intersection of architecture, sustainability, and social impact.

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Episode Transcript

Skyler: Welcome to another episode of laying the foundation.

Skyler: Welcome everybody to another episode of laying the foundation. My name is Skylar and I'm your host. And I am here with two amazing guests. Uh, one of them, Eric, who works for, uh, here at CMBA. And I don't think we've had you on the podcast yet, Eric. No, not

Eric Coleman: yet. I'm excited for my first time. There you

Skyler: go. And I'm excited to have you.

Skyler: And then we also have the wonderful Bridget Solomon, who is the president CEO of Goodwill. Now, what, how, like, how Are, is it just the one here in town or is it Okay? Okay.

Briget Solomon: Trying So, well Goodwill, the Great Plains covers four states in our region. Okay. So we have State of South Dakota and then part of Iowa, Nebraska, and Minnesota.

Skyler: Awesome. Awesome. Very cool. And so I'm sure most people listening probably recognize the name Goodwill. So that's what we're talking about. It is the same goodwill. There's not another Goodwill out there. And uh, today we're gonna be talking about the project that you two are in charge of for here in Sioux City.

Skyler: We are developing. Actually, I'm going to, I'm going to hand it off to you guys. Tell me about what it is that we're developing.

Briget Solomon: So Goodwill is really excited to be launching a brand new mission services center and CMBA has been a great partner in us designing that center and bringing

Eric Coleman: it to life. Awesome.

Skyler: So what exactly does that mean? What, what is it? What is the scope of this? Uh,

Briget Solomon: so our mission services center will include our adult day services. So that's day habilitation and day services for adults with disabilities. You can have mental health diagnosis, individuals with Alzheimer's or dementia. So it's a really diverse population.

Briget Solomon: We'll have our job center there as well as staff offices for our program side of things, job coaches, program managers.

Skyler: Wow, that's a lot all in one place, but I have seen some of the renderings and the pictures and this is a big facility and it is really cool on the inside. Like I said, some of these pictures, um, Eric, do you want to talk a little bit about the sort of design concept that you went for as far as the spaces, uh, kind of the look of it?

Eric Coleman: Yeah. Uh, you know, this is a really unique building from its building code. standpoint, it's an adult daycare, uh, and that, you know, means it has a lot of kind of unique specific requirements for it. And then, you know, in the, uh, the fact that we're designing around people that have a lot of physical and mental disabilities, uh, makes, you know, things, it's not necessarily a challenge, but you're, you're trying to be a lot more conscious of the decisions that you make.

Eric Coleman: And, uh, especially in today's world, when you're trying to be, uh, a good, uh, proponent of universal design, I think it's, It's extended to this particular project and you know, we're trying to make it accessible for everyone. And part of Goodwill's goal for this project is, you know, this isn't just a, uh, adult daycare for the Dayhab services.

Eric Coleman: It's a public community center. And we want the public to be able to utilize this building on their own. And, you know, you didn't mention that, you know, you have like the TSA pre-check, uh. Is, uh, a space in the building where, you know, you can come to Goodwill to do that. And I don't know if you guys do Um, like passports or anything like that, but you know, maybe it's, uh, an opportunity in the future.

Eric Coleman: But the point is, it's a, it's a public space, not just a private, um, you know, building. And part of that's also with the rules and requirements for the, the programs itself.

Briget Solomon: Yeah. You know, what's so cool about the program is it's, it's really an integrated community program. And so that means individuals that are enjoying our program.

Briget Solomon: Also, we want to welcome the public in to enjoy the same activities alongside of those that are here with us. Um, so it's really all about community integration. They're also spending time out in the community, but we need a really great place for them to come spend time during the day if we can't be out in the community.

Briget Solomon: Yeah,

Eric Coleman: yeah, and so, you know that really manifested in how the building was laid out, you know, we we have a very public building. All of the spaces within the building are designed for the public to come in and interact with the participants that are in this building. And all of the spaces themselves are really geared around different levels of activity, different zones of activity.

Eric Coleman: So we have, you know, a typical gym from the the physical fitness side of things, but then we also have an arts and crafts room, a music room, we have a game room, where we get some really competitive games of Mario Kart and stuff like that. And then, you know, that's all focused on what we call Main Street.

Eric Coleman: When you think of a community, most communities, the Main Street is the most active zone in that community. And we really wanted to create that same kind of aesthetic and atmosphere within this building. And Uh, you know, the goal is that the participants all feel like they're just part of a community when they, they come into this building.

Eric Coleman: And then each of those different zones of activity are all accessed from this main street. So it kind of allows a, uh, an atmosphere where the participants can pick and choose what they want to do and feel comfortable in their own space. Right.


Skyler: So jumping to the beginning, I guess, Bridget, what was the conversation that kind of sparked the desire to want to put this facility together and get it built and get it made?

Briget Solomon: Sure. Um, probably 10 years ago, I visited a sister Goodwill that has an adult day center that has sort of this concept. And so keeping that in the back of my mind, we always, we wanted to do something. We've also had this land that we're building on for probably 25 plus years. So in my 20 years time at Goodwill, I've been looking over at that lot and thinking it has potential.

Briget Solomon: And so because we've maxed out a space in our current facility. We want to continue to grow our programs. So we needed a new space to be able to do

Eric Coleman: that. Awesome. When I heard too, that, you know, back when your, your first building was built in the seventies, it was the concept or the thought was, Oh, we're never going to outgrow this.

Eric Coleman: And here we are 50 years later. Yeah.

Briget Solomon: 50 years later, our 75, 000 square foot building is maxed out, which is a blessing and a curse. So we definitely want it. Keep growing and expanding our programs. And this is the best way

Skyler: to do that. Absolutely. So obviously one of the challenges was we need, we need more space.

Skyler: What other challenges or what other needs kind of, we're going into getting this new facility.

Briget Solomon: Well, and I think for the, for the individuals that we're serving, we want to have an environment where they feel welcome and they want to come and enjoy it every day. Right now, our current space feels pretty institutional.

Briget Solomon: It's a couple of big, big spaces that. Really don't accommodate for the unique needs of individuals. It doesn't allow someone to be creative and have a space that maybe it's a little more quiet when you want some quiet time or, you know, kind of adapt your day to how you're feeling and what you want to experience.

Briget Solomon: So that really is why we have kind of gone this route and, and really exceeded our expectations of what we want.

Skyler: Awesome. And like Eric, you mentioned before, there's like a ton of diversity that'll be available in this space from, um, Game rooms to, um, auditorium spaces to, to play, uh, sort of more physical activity and games and things along those lines.

Skyler: And I was told something about Price is Right being featured in one of the rooms

Eric Coleman: to be watched. May or may not have a couple of TVs that can all be synced up together. Together prices right on. Very cool. Very like movie

Skyler: theater feel, or, you know, something along those lines in a way. So pretty cool.

Briget Solomon: That's really a staple. It's, it's something that our participants enjoy and look forward to every day at 10 o'clock. And so if that is not on, then, then we have to figure something out real

Skyler: quick. Backup TVs or something along those lines. Awesome. So fantastic. Um, when it came to developing this whole project and, and, you know, you came to, to Eric and.

Skyler: The planning all got started at what point, because this is obviously a big topic that we've been discussing, especially here in the office was this net zero concept. What point did we say, Hey, I think we could do this as net zero.

Eric Coleman: So it's a really interesting approach that we took with this one. Um, back during the, the programming phase of the project, when we were just starting our conversations and bringing all of our consultants.

Eric Coleman: Uh, to the table. One of the, the little line items that our, um, Mechanical Electrical Engineers, EDA, had, you know, written out was potential for, uh, using a geothermal system. And a lot of that has to do with, and, you know, our area of the country, it's a, it's a viable option, capitalize on that energy source, uh, but really with the Inflation Reduction Act, it's become a lot more, uh, palatable from a, a financial standpoint.

Eric Coleman: We had gone through some iterations of what this, uh, project was going to look like. We really wanted to make sure we got the plan, uh, to a spot where Goodwill could really see themselves functioning and operating with that. Um, and then when the form of the building started to take shape from that plan, um, and we started recognizing, Hey, if we're going to look at this geothermal system here.

Eric Coleman: You know, we're really not that intense of a building use from an energy standpoint. I wonder how close we could be to actually pursuing net zero energy. Um, and obviously, you know, this is CMBA's first project of doing that. And we had to, you know, do some research to figure out what that would take. We had to talk with our engineers about it.

Eric Coleman: And this was kind of all behind the scenes before Goodwill was even aware of it. We wanted to just bring that information to Goodwill and say, Hey, here's an opportunity for us. We know that one of Goodwill's missions is being sustainable. Yeah. Both from a, a resource standpoint, but then also from a community standpoint.

Eric Coleman: They wanna be a forerunner of that. Mm-Hmm. . And we had all of our research and we brought that to Goodwill and we presented everything that we had found and, and said, Hey, you may have to go out on a limb with us to, to really try to work through all of this. 'cause there's a lot of moving parts that Yes, CMBA and EDA had not.

Eric Coleman: really done before and, uh, they trusted us thankfully to, to take that approach and I think it's been amazing process ever since. Absolutely. Attention architecture professionals. Are you looking for an employment opportunity that will provide you with a wonderful work culture and a competitive pay rate?

Eric Coleman: Look no further than CMBA Architects. Our firm offers flexible scheduling and A casual dress code and a great work environment that will help you collaborate and create. Plus, who doesn't love having

Skyler: Fridays off? To learn more about our available positions, visit the careers page at CMBAarchitects. com and apply to join the CMBA team.

Skyler: So explain to me what all net zero kind of encompasses. What all does that mean? I probably

Eric Coleman: should have started with that. I think that's great because we had to research that too. What all net zero meant. And I think from the biggest point of this, specifically from Goodwill's side of things, was if this was going to be a net zero energy building, at the end of the day they needed something tangible to say this was a net zero energy building.

Eric Coleman: Right. It wasn't enough to just Say you're not zero energy. Anyone can say that it's how do you back that up and, and show that. So we had to first figure out what was the appropriate certification process for a net zero energy building. Uh, so we could make sure at the end of the day, we had something to show for it.

Eric Coleman: And that also goes into from the community aspect, when the public comes to see this building and interact with it, it's, it's an educational opportunity for them to see that something like that could be done. Um, in our area. So, uh, CMBA started looking through different opportunities. Uh, you know, we looked at the LEED certification process because they have a zero energy, uh, component.

Eric Coleman: And we looked at a couple other ones and we settled on the International Living Foundation Institute, ILFI, for their certification process. And ultimately that served as kind of the criteria for the project. Gave us something to measure our building up against and something to quote unquote test it for that full certification process.

Eric Coleman: And it was honestly probably the easiest. Um, in terms of what you need to do, that doesn't mean it's easy to do, but the, the way they test that was basically saying your building has to, through renewable energy sources on site, produce more energy than the, building or facility uses annually. So essentially you need to produce more energy than you use.

Eric Coleman: Right, right. And the caveat to that was your energy sources on site could not involve combustion. Okay. So that eliminated natural gas essentially and anything that was more of a fossil fuel, uh, you know, essentially if you had to burn it to produce the energy, you can't use it. Right, right. Uh, so you know, That was, uh, you know, coupled with EDA's, uh, preliminary concept of using the geothermal system, uh, it really didn't make that much of a change for us, uh, with the project.

Eric Coleman: You know, there's not a huge energy intensity for this building or energy use intensity, the EUI. And it really just meant, uh, you know, changing a couple of few things. I'm talking really big picture here, but, uh, a couple of small details we had to change with our design and a couple of different system selections from, uh, you know, going to the all electric, uh, direction for the building, but it really was pretty straightforward from that.

Eric Coleman: Once we knew. How we were going to certify this building, because again, at the end of the day, if you can't have something that says you're a net zero energy, uh, does it really mean, does it really mean anything?

Skyler: And we can hope that by seeing the success of this project and by seeing the capability of getting to a net zero situation that hopefully it sparks that possibility to do that with other spaces in the Sioux land area.

Skyler: And obviously around the world, we'd love that. Um, but more specifically in the Sioux land area, for sure. And being able to, um, minimize our, our environmental kind of footprint and things

Eric Coleman: along those lines. Yeah, absolutely. And as building codes and energy codes are getting more and more, uh, well rounded, and we are starting to, uh, have contractors in our area start to become more aware of what, uh, Is required with those I don't think it's a far stretch to say more buildings could be designed like this Yeah, we didn't have to take things too much further with goodwill than we would typically do on Uh, it's a standard project and part of that's because energy code has has really pushed our design process In a way that we are already being more sustainable with our projects and Well, when you have to meet the code, you have to meet the code and, uh, there's a couple of smaller things that we had to do with this project and, you know, part of it with the, the renewable resources or energy sources on the, on, on site, we're using a solar array and that's obviously a cost for a project, but that doesn't mean you can't have net zero energy ready facilities where you're, you know, designing the project so that in the future it could be net zero energy whenever you're ready to Install those last couple of components to you know, essentially be the energy generation right source, but There's not that much of a stretch from current design projects at CMBA to you know If you're really wanting to implement that net zero energy uh You know, take a really good look at it because there's, it's probably closer and it's more attainable than you think.

Skyler: Right. Right. Now, with that being said, Bridget, when Eric approached you about this idea, what was kind of going through your mind as far as like, it sounds like a great idea, but you know, what's it going to cost or, you know, whatever else kind of maybe flowed through your brain? Yeah,

Briget Solomon: well, absolutely. Um, cost has been a significant part of it.

Briget Solomon: Part of the project, but, but also, you know, what does it mean for the organization long term, um, it's very awesome that we won't necessarily have energy bills and so that's a way to sustain the organization and the resources that we have. Yeah. There's some added upfront costs, but with inflation reduction act and just to be able to truly live our mission.

Briget Solomon: Cause that planet piece is a big part. We've been green since the beginning. And so this is just another layer to add onto that. Absolutely. So it's, it's really fun and exciting to be leading that way. And I think that grows added attention to a really cool program and services that we can offer.

Skyler: Absolutely. And it. It's definitely leading, which is really exciting. Like I said before, it'll be exciting for people to be able to look at this and say, they did it. They were able to do it. Why can't we do it? And that's what I hope for sure. So you keep mentioning, um, and Eric, you mentioned it as well.

Skyler: The, uh, goal of sustainability as one of, of Goodwill's goals for this project. What, what other kind of sides to, um, or goals rather were encompassed within this? Yeah.

Briget Solomon: Um, well, I think, you know, our three main components for our organization are people, planet, prosperity. And so the people, of course, that's our mission, serving the community, making sure that, um, under the lens of like workforce development and community supports that we're doing that to, um, serve our area.

Briget Solomon: Um, the prosperity piece is making sure that we're sustainable in how we operate. So we have our retail stores, they fund. Most of what we do as an organization. So it's a very sustainable business model, um, as a nonprofit, especially. Um, and then that, that planet piece, you know, we've been recycling household goods for decades, well over a hundred years.

Briget Solomon: locally. Um, and so that really brought it all together. And now we can showcase that in a facility that is going to be ready for the public to come in and explore with us. Absolutely.

Skyler: Absolutely. And then kind of stemming off of that, when this project is, is finished and it's open and it's running, I mean, what do you imagine for this space?

Skyler: What are you kind of hoping for that comes out of

Briget Solomon: all of this? Yeah, um, we see it as going to be a very busy hub of activity on the west side of Sioux City. Absolutely. You know, so our adult day services, of course, and our job center is a very busy place already. Um, we're going to be moving it just across the street.

Briget Solomon: Um, but then evenings and weekends and being able to do community events like our shoe and mitten party. So we've been doing that for over 80 years and that brings in, you know, children from the community, provide some new shoes and socks and hats, mittens, um, just those type of events where we can really pull people together, um, with the gym, we'll be able to do a wide variety of activities, hopefully some sporting activities and, you know, and some other community

Skyler: events.

Skyler: Yeah, absolutely. Awesome. What, what am I missing here? What am I, what have I not asked that you guys really want to make sure that gets mentioned here? So I sometimes find that my questions can be a little bit limited and you guys are the expert. I mean, Eric, you're out there designing it. Bridget, you've been through the entire process every step of the way.

Skyler: What hasn't been covered? That's that's going on on your guys's end.

Eric Coleman: I think one thing for this particular project that was really helpful was we had an owner team between you, Sean, Cindy, Charlotte, that were really involved and on board through the whole process and they were engaged in that. That makes a difference from the design side of things, because we often are in our own bubbles.

Eric Coleman: We know what we know, you guys know what, you know, we're trying to design a building for you, the end user. But if you guys don't have the knowledge or the information, when you're going through some of the meetings that we have to go through, which unfortunately, you know, door hardware meetings are, are important, they are miserable to sit through, but they, they're ultimately.

Eric Coleman: For you to understand and tell us how you want your building to function, uh, those can be really difficult, uh, if there's not that information or knowledge or there's just not an interest with it. And you guys were amazing through this whole process and. I love the questions that Sean asks all the time because he's, he's actually engaged and he's interested with it and I know part of that's because you guys also have all the participants that are always asking you lots of questions, which just goes to show how important this this building is.

Eric Coleman: These are incredible people that this facility is being built for. Built for. And uh, it shows just through how much they care and how much they're asking for.

Briget Solomon: Yeah. And I think for me too, um, the partnerships for this whole project have been amazing. It's, it's so great to be working with mostly all local contractors, people that are really excited.

Briget Solomon: Everyone's being stretched in a new way, learning something new, trying to apply it, a different way of doing things. Yeah. Um, it's, it's really great. The enthusiasm's been incredibly high. And two, I feel like we're getting a very custom facility that all of the needs of those that we're serving as are being met.

Briget Solomon: And I'm sure there'll be things after the fact that we're like, Oh, I wish we would've done that, but we've been very thorough and asking lots of questions. And really, um, trying to capture all the needs of the community members. Absolutely.

Skyler: That's always kind of, yeah, the, always the struggle between the architect and client is, you know, you guys know all the construction and everything like that.

Skyler: And you're trying to kind of translate that to the client. The client knows what they need and they're trying to relay that to you. And it's all trying to get pieced together in this big puzzle. But. When it all comes together in the end, that's, that's always a great thing. Well, honestly, that's all I've got for today.

Skyler: And, uh, that's all the questions that I had and I hope I'm not missing anything, but I know I'm extremely excited to see as the construction progresses. I know I'm over on that side of town pretty often. So I always get to drive by and see it and see how much it's progressed. We just recently had that beam signing, which was really exciting.

Skyler: Got to be there for that. Um, get some pictures there. And it was amazing to see the people that were there that wanted to be a part of that and be a part of. What's going to be something that they're going to get to have access to and to get to use So thank you both for taking time out of your day to talk about this amazing project that i'm excited about And I know both of you are very excited about and I know all of Sioux city is excited about absolutely.

Eric Coleman: Yeah Thank

Briget Solomon: you so much. We appreciate the opportunity to talk about this project. It's a lot of fun.

Skyler: Absolutely. And for those of you that are listening, if you want to find out more about this project, you can definitely do so by obviously checking out Goodwill and the Goodwill, the Great Plains and everything that they're doing, as well as over on CMBA's website, cmbaarchitects.

Skyler: com. You can find out all the information of where we're at with the construction process there, and. You can see some of the renders and design process, uh, documents and things like that. And of course, if you want to see some of the other progress, such as pictures from the beam signing and things like that, you can check us out on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn, all those social medias.

Skyler: And of course, don't forget to subscribe or follow the laying the foundation podcast, wherever it is that you get your podcasts from, whether it be Spotify, iTunes, or anywhere else, uh, make sure to hit that follow button. And that way you never miss an episode of laying the foundation. In the meantime, my name is Skylar and this has been another episode of laying the foundation.

Skyler: See you next time.

Post by CMBA
April 18, 2024