Denver, Colorado | Higher Education

University of Colorado Denver Student Commons Building Renovation

$47 M | 156,045 SF

New student affairs and classroom building at the University of Colorado Denver

  • LEED Gold, Daylight harvesting




Cator, Ruma & Associates was selected to provide the mechanical and electrical design and contract administration for the new Student Commons building at University of Colorado Denver’s campus. 

The building houses three primary program components: lecture halls of varying sizes and configurations, academic department office space, and Student Services and Affairs (Admissions, Financial Aid, Registrar, Bursar, Counseling, and Tutoring).

The mechanical systems were designed with an emphasis on energy efficiency to help the building meet LEED Gold certification. The cooling plant consists of a magnetic-bearing water cooled chiller, roof mounted cooling tower, and remote condenser water sump. The heating plant consists of three high-efficiency condensing boilers. Custom air handling units were designed with heat recovery wheels, indirect/direct evaporative cooling, and fan arrays. Water-cooled heat pumps and a process cooling water loop were designed to serve areas with high sensible heat loads, such as computer labs and IT closets.

The electrical systems incorporated a lighting control system, including daylight harvesting and occupancy sensors for lighting control, as well as HVAC zone control for after-hours occupants. Lighting included LED and fluorescent meeting lighting power density requirements, exceeding IECC/LEED requirements. There is a 250kW generator set for back-up of life safety and non-essential building loads, and integrated metering for monitoring of building systems to aid in energy management throughout the facility.

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