John W. Olver Design Building

Leers Weinzapfel Associates


Bringing together the previously dispersed Departments of Architecture, Building Construction Technology, and Landscape Architecture & Regional Planning, the John W. Olver Design Building fosters multidisciplinary collaboration and expressively integrates building, landscape architecture, and building technology. 

The building replaces a surface parking lot and strengthens the urban form of the campus, improving walkability and connectivity while increasing the ground permeability and planting density of the site.

•Re-greens the site, increasing vegetation by 18%. Native plant
species restore 76% of landscaped areas.
•Reduces the volume of storm water runoff by 50% through
bioretention basins, swales and structured inlets. 
•More than 80% of suspended solids removed from storm water

Featuring engineered timber, it's the largest cross-laminated timber (CLT) academic building in the United States. It demonstrates the sustainability, economy, and beauty of mass timber as a building material and renewable resource.

•The timber structure removes 2,681 metric tons of carbon from the
•Mass timber construction reduced carbon emissions by 13%, CFCs
by 10% and non-renewable energy use by 15%, compared to
conventional (steel/concrete) construction.

Uses 72% less energy than an average university building (46.3 pEUI). An integrated approach to sustainability maximizes the impact of passive design, while incorporating strategic engineering solutions to minimize energy use. 

•Courtyard-inspired building form reduces envelope heat loss while
for natural light and views to campus. 
•Anodized aluminum rainscreen system delivers a high-performance
building envelope with R-31 walls and R-47 roof. Insulated low-e
glazing balances daylight against thermal loss. Electrochromic
glazing provides shading in sensitive, glare-prone spaces.
•Separate hot and cold water loops - one for AHUs/chilled beams
and the other for fan coils - leverage efficiency of district
steam/chilled water and further fine-tune the building's performance. 
The central "commons" gathering area uses a radiant floor system,
maintaining occupant comfort while lowering the set point
temperature and reducing energy consumption.

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