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Legacy project: Durable burn building benefits south metro cities

With more than seven times the space of the previous structure, the A.B.L.E. burn building designed by CNH Architects is a firefighter practice facility named for, and serving the communities of Apple Valley, Burnsville, Lakeville and Eagan, Minn.

The four-level Burnsville building uses an exposed exterior concrete poured superstructure to support the building and “sacrificial” concrete walls, explains CNH Principal Quinn Hutson. This means the concrete walls don’t support the building. As they deteriorate over time and use, they are less expensive to replace than supporting walls.

The design gives firefighters excellent simulated environments for residential, commercial and industrial fires. The structure can withstand 1,200-degree temperatures. It is located off of Cliff Road and Interstate-35W. It opened in 2013. Click for more details.

Watch these televised reports from the Lakeville and Eagan fire departments, which feature interviews with Hutson and fire professionals who were involved in the project. It begins at the 5:20 mark.

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