New Science Center Update
february 15, 2008
Report by Roger Goode
Associate Vice President for Operations
With December’s snow and cold, we had to repeatedly plow and heat the ground so that the concrete footings / foundations could cure properly. Despite this delay, our construction manager, Bond Brothers Inc. (BBI) assures us that we will stay on schedule.
This week, we embark on a milestone as our steel arrives on site and we begin erecting it tomorrow (Wednesday), a process that will take about eight weeks to complete.
This milestone represents an opportunity to publicize our progress and to engage the campus via a Steel Topping Off Ceremony. We are targeting mid-March for this ceremony but must assess weather impacts on the process of erecting the steel before we can set a precise date.
Steel arrives on building site. Photo taken February 14, 2008.
In designing an energy-efficient Science Center, we have subscribed to National Grid’s Comprehensive Design Approach (CDA), an integrated “whole building” design process. Because of special ventilation requirements, laboratory buildings consume more energy per square foot than other types of college campus buildings, making our project an ideal candidate for this program.
Using this “whole building” efficiency approach, our Design Team brainstormed with National Grid’s energy consultants to generate, analyze and compare potential energy efficient design features and equipment options using computerized energy modeling to reduce our energy requirements and therefore costs.
Once the energy efficiency measures were identified, our Design Team then used the results of the CDA service to guide the final building design. The energy efficient design:
- conforms to the Advanced Buildings Program benchmark for lighting power density;
- provides for energy efficient HVAC systems (beyond code requirements);
- employs several other cost effective energy measures (e.g. high performance window
gglazing and building envelope); and
- reduces demand for electricity and fossil fuels (gas/oil).
We are incorporating National Grid’s incentives for installing these energy measures into the overall project budget.
We have enhanced our Project Website by adding aerial photos, finalized building floor plans and several related press releases. We have also added a web camera for ongoing viewing of the project. We will notify the community when the web cam is publicly available.
Since the exterior presentation of the Science Center is so important, not only because it will be the first building people will see upon entering campus, but it must also complement the surrounding buildings, O’Hara Hall and Martin Institute, over the next few weeks we will be constructing a physical “mock-up” of the building’s exterior.
The “mock-up” will be approximately 8’ tall by 20’ wide mounted on a concrete pad and will be used to show us the physical wall construction details (metal studs, protection boards, vapor barrier, brick work and at least one window).
Scheduled completion for this very exciting building project is targeted for June 2009.