Archived Story

Lowe open house Dec. 14 for new HQ

Published 4:28pm Monday, November 26, 2012

 

CASSOPOLIS — Edward Lowe Foundation hosts a public open house from 1 to 3 p.m. Dec. 14 to showcase its new headquarters building.

The new facility replaces a building largely destroyed by a fire in early 2011. Although two sections of the old building were salvaged (and renovated into an archives center with offices for researchers, along with a laundry center and storage), employees worked in temporary offices spread across the foundation›s 2,600-acre campus for many months.

“I’m extremely proud of how our staff rallied and adapted during this interim” says Darlene Lowe, the foundation’s chairman, “but it’s wonderful to be back under one roof again.”

The new headquarters building is located closer to the foundation’s entrance at 58220 Decatur Rd. The Troyer Group of South Bend provided design-build services, and the new building incorporates numerous energy-efficient features, such as a geothermal heating and cooling system and a unique insulation system. Aesthetics include modern furnishings, lots of natural light and vistas of surrounding prairie and woodlands.

At 13,000 square feet, the new building is about the same size as the old one; however, its interior design and circular traffic flow make it feel more spacious and enables greater employee interaction.

The old headquarters building was originally built in the late 1970s as a barn for a black angus cattle program that Ed Lowe ran, said Mike McCuistion, the foundation’s director of physical resources.

“Even though we expanded and renovated it over the years, the new HQ is quite a step up,” he said. “Instead of trying to continually adapt a building, this facility has been designed specifically for our needs from the beginning.”

In addition to touring the new building, guests at the open house will be able to learn more about the legacy of Ed Lowe, along with the foundation’s current entrepreneurship and land stewardship programs, via displays created for the event.

“Because much of our work is carried out at the national level, we recognize that the local community may not be aware of what we do,” said Penny Lewandowski, the foundation’s director of entrepreneurship development. “This is a great opportunity to share our mission and explain how our programs are helping communities across the country build a supportive culture for today›s entrepreneurs.”

 

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