The Conrad Prebys Aztec Student Union at San Diego State University in California. Courtesy Paul Lang Photography.
Thornton Tomasetti provided LEED consulting for a new 175,942-square-foot student union building. The facility houses a convenience store, café and dining, bowling alley, student lounges and administrative offices. The new facility adopts the California Mission architectural vernacular of the original core campus buildings, and will serve as an icon and gateway to the campus.
The building’s design employs numerous strategies to achieve LEED Platinum certification. A highly efficient radiant floor is combined with natural ventilation in the west wing. Building automation systems control operable windows to effectively coordinate with HVAC systems. LED and CFL light fixtures throughout the building and on the site are controlled by occupancy sensors or timers to reduce electricity consumption. A “cool roof” and highly-engineered wall construction act to minimize heat gain within the building. The efficiency of the building systems, coupled with a PV array that generates 844,938 kW per year, allowed the building to reduce its energy usage by 50 percent from ASHRAE 90 and Title 24. Additionally, site paving with a high solar reflectance index will help to reduce heat island effect on the campus and storm-water cisterns below the courtyard capture rainwater and use it for irrigation.
Thornton Tomasetti staff coordinated with the owner and the design team to manage the LEED certification process by providing technical advice to the project team; coordinating and managing the LEED Online documentation effort; reviewing product submittals and RFIs, and managing quality assurance and control procedures related to the certification process.
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