SUNY Albany identified a spectacular site for this dorm expansion, adjacent to Indian Lake, one of the nicest amenities on campus. The program called for 500 single-bed rooms, suite style, with all appropriate services. The project was to be LEED Silver and amply funded at $57 million.
The site was separated from the lake by the campus loop road, and shared a property line with a residential neighborhood. The neighbors were very concerned about noise and the loss of their woodland views, as well as flooding.
THE PS&S SOLUTION
The site was regraded to drain the runoff away from the neighbors. All of the excess soil was used to create a landscaped berm, which averaged approximately 8 feet high, between the neighbors and the dorms. The loop road was relocated to be adjacent to the berm, so that the dorms related directly to the lake. Geothermal coupling was used to reduce energy usage (partially funded by a grant which PS&S helped to obtain). These efficiencies contributed to a final rating of LEED Gold.
Using Building Information Modeling (BIM), the project was produced with highly accurate drawings, which brought the construction bid in at $44 million.