Vermont Studio Center Pearl House

Pearl House is the third building to be completed as part of the Vermont Studio Center (VSC) Campus Master Plan. The project stabilized, restored, preserved and expanded the historic building with a “down to the studs” renovation and two-story addition. As with other recently completed VSC/CDG collaboration projects, Pearl House is now highly energy efficient, has a fully-accessibility ground floor, and provides occupancy flexibility for VSC as it evolves institutionally in the future.

Energy efficiency and occupant comfort improvements to Pearl House include: building insulation that is significantly higher performance than Vermont's energy code requires, triple-pane windows, high-efficiency lighting and HVAC systems, and “ultra-tight” construction practices that tested close to Passive House standards.

As a component of VSC's Campus Master Plan (developed by CDG collaboratively with VSC), the Pearl House project is another example of CDG’s design process, where: all voices are heard, conceptual risk-taking is welcome, ideas can percolate, and the core intention of the project is held sacred.

"Realizing designs within the context of a master plan is much more of a living process than a finite project," said Jim MacDowell, the Physical Plant Director of Vermont Studio Center. "As the project comes to fruition, the hidden, ghosted lines are part of the art of the collaboration. Remembering that there might have been a wall here or a window there is part of the process and those eraser marks make the finished project richer."