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This is a new building for Valley Farm Credit, a bank chartered to serve the needs of the agricultural community. The new facility houses several organizations, including the branch office, central administrative headquarters, and central computer training facility for Valley Farm Credit. Additionally, three independent office suites are rented to allied businesses— a financial planner, a realtor, and a crop insurance agency—thereby providing a comprehensive business and financial center for the Valley’s agricultural community.

The building is located on the historic Valley Pike in the Shenandoah Valley, now a jumble of pre-Civil War mills, houses, and farms, as well as car washes, car dealerships, and highway strip architecture. The building is a collage of local agrarian building forms put together in an unconventional way, making it both familiar and dynamic. The tall brick structure is reminiscent of area grist mills, while the shed- roofed stucco portions evoke vernacular barns, outbuildings, and silos. The building’s materials include metal roofs, brick, and stucco, in keeping with the area’s palette of building materials.

The two-acre site was a field devoid of trees or defining features. To help reflect the agricultural heritage of the organization, and to help set an example for land management, a new orchard of trees was designed to fill the site. Within the large-scale orchard, which infiltrates and organizes the parking lot, a smaller, tightly packed hybrid apple orchard presents itself to the highway, and follows the seasonal cycles of the area’s largest agricultural crop. The parking lot is lit indirectly at night, with uplights on each tree within the grid. Vines will eventually climb the arbor, which was constructed from recycled timbers.


  • Builder: Howard Shockey & Sons, Inc., Winchester, Virginia
  • Structural Engineer: Structural Concepts, Inc., Winchester, Virginia
  • Mechanical Engineer: Comfort Design, Inc., Winchester, Virginia
  • Photographer: Hoachlander Davis Photography, Washington, D.C.