Published March 15, 2023
Powered for Growth
Dacon completes work on 135K SF facility for Edwards Vacuum
We’re all for the completion of building projects, but when the client and its design build collaborator partner on a gift to the local Boys & Girls Club to mark the occasion, we’ll show up to the ribbon cutting with bells on.
Dacon Corporation, headquartered in Natick, Mass., completed the New England regional location for Edwards Vacuum in late 2022. To celebrate, Dacon’s in-house philanthropy — Designed with Dignity — combined efforts with Edwards Vacuum to fulfill an unmet community need by providing career skills in graphic design and animation for 180 teens. The Edwards Digital Arts Studio within the Haverhill Boys & Girls Club was born.
Edwards Vacuum is a designer and manufacturer of technology products that are used in the semiconductor, power, renewable energy, and scientific R&D markets. Their products are used for vacuum and abatement, which are processes that reduce operating costs, energy use and installation time during semiconductor manufacturing. The semiconductor market continues to grow exponentially - it is the 4th highest export in the U.S. after refined oil, aircraft, and crude oil. Semiconductors have a dramatic impact on our economy, contributing $276.9B to GDP both in direct sales and downstream to 300 economic sectors. This new location is dedicated to cryopump manufacturing, a recent acquisition that expanded the company’s technology offerings.
A well-planned design strategy for any building correctly configures human interaction, energy use, business growth and long-term interest. This created an interesting architectural paradox, as Haverhill’s economic lineage stemmed from a dense saturation of industrial and inefficient hat, shoe, and comb manufacturing plants that peaked in the 1920s. Thus the design rationale for this future LEED facility centered on optimizing efficiency across four functional domains - manufacturing, innovation labs, offices, and warehousing - which resulted in a state-of-the-art innovation and solutions center.
“One of the challenges we faced during the project development was that the Edwards’ manufacturing processes were constantly evolving,” says Maryellen Butler, AIA, Project Architect, Dacon. “This is who they are as a company. The only constant in the layout of the R&D labs and manufacturing space was that we knew they would change. The equipment plan was not finalized until six months after construction started. Our team worked collaboratively with Edwards and experienced design build subcontractors throughout the process. We needed to constantly pivot, redesign, and make accommodations for unknown information. This was done without major impact to the construction schedule."
The project’s LEED initiatives include provisions for future solar setup, reduced water usage, high-efficiency cooling systems, and dark sky-compliant lighting. While referencing a mill aesthetic was initially planned, the client felt it conflicted with their modern manufacturing approach. Thus the design directive incorporated inferences of surrounding woodlands and mill elements – maple ceilings, exposed structures, and plans for representational graphics of the manufacturing past.
For over 35 years, Dacon Corporation has focused on design build, creating a portfolio comprised of innovation, architectural creativity, and practical cost management. Learn more about Dacon on Mortarr or at dacon1.com.
 ] Source: Semiconductor Industry Association, 2022 State of the U.S. Semiconductor Industry.