Jean R. Packard Occoquan Center

Lorton, VA

Visitor orientation, environmental education space, exhibit, café
Multipurpose event rental space, commercial kitchen, event preparation and staging spaces
Outdoor terrace, pavilion, waterfront plaza, trails
Designed to achieve LEED Silver Certification
NOVA Parks
Programming, Site Analysis, Sustainable Design, Full Design Services, Construction Administration, Building Information Modeling

Sited on a bluff overlooking the Occoquan River, the Jean R. Packard Occoquan Center takes advantage of the natural topography and separates the building’s primary functions—interpretation, visitor amenities, and multipurpose space—and usage patterns. Driven by the contrast between, and union of, two halves—one light and open (public/events) and the other solid and heavy (support)—the architectural expression is articulated through the use of different structural systems and materials: delicate steel and glass on the west side allowing for expansive views of the river and heavy timber and wood cladding on the east.  Similar patterning between the halves ties them together to create a cohesive structure.

“This facility will take Occoquan Regional Park to the top in terms of local destinations.  It will provide great educational value for generations to come ...” 

—Paul Gilbert, Executive Director, Northern Virgina Regional Park Authority