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Published August 2, 2014


Once in a while, we perform a project that’s a little out of the ordinary. A project that comes to mind was the Potter League for Animals shelter in Middletown, Rhode Island completed a few years ago. We were selected as the piping contractor on this project. Our contract was with Mechanical Construction Services, based in Lawrence, Massachusetts. Behan Brothers, of Middletown, Rhode Island, was the project’s general contractor.

The architects, ARQ, designed a building that allows The Potter League to overcome several challenges that have previously hindered the organization’s effectiveness as an animal welfare facility. ARQ is best known for its work at the San Francisco SPCA and the ASPCA in New York City. The small Maine-based firm brings a New England influence to its designs, and is renowned for pioneering innovative solutions for animal care.

The structure makes efficient use of energy, water and other resources, reducing the impact on the environment. Management of storm water through a vegetated roof and cistern system, high efficiency heating and cooling systems, and use of recycled materials are examples of sustainable design incorporated in the building.

As a rule, green buildings are of higher quality, last longer and cost less to operate, while creating healthier surroundings for the occupants. The Potter League has received the Gold LEED® (Leadership in Environmental and Energy Design) certification of the project, a green building rating system developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC). This certification offers a suite of standards for environmentally sustainable construction.

Animal shelter construction presents a unique series of challenges. The new building is designed to control disease, keep animal housing areas hygienic with durable and germ-resistant materials, and provide housing that promotes positive behavior in an environment that is stimulating and enriching for the animals.

Among the unique features of the building are the cat condos and dog adoption areas that provide the animals with radiant-heated pens with cool zones that offer exceptional comfort. The dog adoption area consists of two separate locations, with ten pens in each area, and five radiant zones serving the ten pens.

Each individual pen has a cool zone that allows a dog to move from the heated slab area if it desires. Each zone also has an in-slab sensor with a wall thermostat that can be controlled by the staff. This radiant system is independent of the building’s heat so they have independent control of the areas. The cat condos are in a separate area of the shelter, and also have radiant-heated slabs. These are set up with three radiant zones for heat, similar to the dog areas, except that the cat condos do not have cool zones.

Be efficient with your time, and trust us to be efficient with your piping project. I promise in the long run, you will be thrilled.

These animals need your help.

For more information about participating in the Honoring Their Trust capital campaign, contact:

The Potter League for Animals
P.O. Box 412
Newport, RI 02840

The shelter is located at:

87 Oliphant Lane
Middletown, RI

For more information on The Potter League, visit their website at: www.potterleague.org

Be efficient with your time, and trust PSI to be efficient with your piping project. I promise in the long run, you will be thrilled. Have any questions? Drop us an email, psi@PipingSystemsIns.com or give us a call today at 508.644.2221.