Pro Tour: Deep Energy Retrofit of a Historic Mill

Exterior shot of Abbot Mill Complex, featuring canal
Westford, MA 01886
Friday, May 20, 2016

CEUs: 2.5 AIA LU/HSW, 3.0 BPI,  and certificates of participation are available

The Abbot Mill complex consists of 13 former woolen mill buildings dating from the late 1800s, now on the National Register of Historic Places in Westford, MA.  This Pro Tour showcased the six years of work that it took to rehabilitate this historic industrial property into a modern, high-performing residential complex.  Deep energy retrofit building systems were applied throughout the complex, including several innovative common areas. Canal water-powered heating and cooling system will run without electricity or gas for most of the eight months it is in operation.

This project  utilizes modern green building technologies while incorporating features unique to this historic site: for example, a closed loop water source heat pump system which is fed by the existing canal system that runs through the complex.

Phase II of the project (another four buildings) was underway during the Pro Tour, and available for viewing. 

Project Features

  • 230,000 sq. ft
  • Winner of several awards, including Engineering News Record 2013 Best Renovation
  • gas and electric split systems in outbuildings; water source heat pumps in Main Building; CAR exhaust vent systems throughout ; Condensing dryers
  • original 85kw hydroelectric generator that was repaired and restored in 2014
  • Two levels of underground parking beneath the mill buildings
  • Canal water powered heating and cooling system to run without electricity or gas for most of the eight months it is in operation
  • 350KW of photovoltaics on the roof 


12:30 PM Doors open, registration, coffee and networking

1:00 PM

Arrive at meeting point; welcome by NESEA; project orientation

1:30 PM

Begin tour

3:30 PM

Group returns to meeting point, reception with light refreshments

3:45 PM

Presentation on the project develpopment

4:45 PM

Final remarks, event concludes by 5 PM

Thank You to the 2019 BuildingEnergy Pro Tour Series Sponsors

Presenting Sponsor:


Thanks to the event's title sponsor!

Thanks to our event sponsors: