South Central Arkansas Electric Cooperative was facing the problem of their building and site impeding their ability to operate effectively and efficiently. Located on 4 acres within the confines of the City of Arkadelphia, this facility is intertwined with the fabric of the city blocks, limiting access to the property for service and construction vehicles, restricting expansion of the existing facilities, and providing no space for any additional outside crews in a major outage situation. The office building is positioned right up to the property line on two sides with parking and the operations building located on the other two sides. Customer parking is limited, there is no space for a drive-thru payment window, and the handicap accessibility is limited due to site constraints. The existing office building lacks energy efficient systems and technologies. The pole yard and transformer storage is located on a lot remote from the office and operation facilities.
M+H Architects met with management and staff to identify and set goals and priorities for the SCAEC facilities. The new facility utilizes approximately 8 of the 25 acres they recently acquired, giving them room for long range growth and future expansion. The 28,944 SF office, operations, warehouse and vehicle storage building limits the need for redundant support facilities and get management and operations crews under the same roof. All of the service and construction vehicles will be located under a carport with the loading and warehouse area in the center of the building, on the same level, for ease of moving materials and equipment. A separate 5,032 SF of vehicle maintenance building service bays and covered storage is also included. A fuel island is also be located on the site.