• Corporate HQ, NY
  • Melville, NY
  • Iselin, NJ
  • Ossining, NY
  • Mount Laurel, NJ

Batsto Visitor's Center Renovation and Expansion


Prior to joining HAKS, Francisco A. Ruela, AIA, LEED AP, was the principal-in-charge of the renovation and expansion of the 10,700-square-foot Visitor's Center at the 200-year-old Historic Batsto Village. The program included the organization and display of the museum's collection of materials and artifacts using state-of-the art methods and media and a 5,000-square-foot addition, which included a 120-seat auditorium and the expansion of the Visitor's Center exhibit, shop, and office spaces. His team was also in charge of the art installation and coordination of an orientation film. The museum serves as the orientation center for the Wharton Estate, previously the Batsto Iron Foundry & Company Town. The Visitor’s Center also serves the Wharton State Forest and the 100-square-mile Pinelands area campgrounds. 

Mr. Ruela’s team was responsible for project management, architecture, and MEP engineering services. This project was designed under the guidelines of the U.S. Green Building Council to obtain LEED certification. 

The design incorporates a geothermal heat source used with two ground source recovery heat pumps use of natural (cedar and stucco) and recycled content materials, and daylighting and energy management systems.