Studio Arts Building

Studio Arts Building Exterior

Project Overview

Completed: 2008
Architect/Engineer: Gund Partnership, Inc.; LeMessurier Consultants
Project Manager: Burt Ewart

Project Purpose

The new $25M Studio Arts Building provides 50,000 gross square feet of instructional studios as well as individual faculty and student studios. The instructional studios accommodate several studio art functions including printmaking, sculpture, painting and ceramics.

Sustainability Features

Reused existing pavers in front of Hills, requiring some extra work to remove the pavers by hand, clean each brick and stack them on pallets so they can be reused. Reuse of the pavers reduced both the amount of material that would need to be trucked to a landfill site, and the amount of raw materials required to produce additional bricks and transport them to the site.

Because the design of the building will not allow the collection or storage of the same quantities of hazardous and toxic materials as is currently on hand in the Art Department's various studios, the users of the building will utilize the EH&S Reuse and Exchange program to recycle and reuse various chemicals, and keep them in very small quantities in the building. This is a substantial enhancement to the greenness of the Art Program, affecting many disciplines, especially Printmaking and Photography. It also reduces the cost of operation, as EH&S provides the chemicals for free to participating UMass units.

The landscaping of the project features low-maintenance, drought-resistant plant materials.

Storm water that is collected on the site from hard surfaces, such as pavement and roofs, will be detained in an underground 3,000 gallon tank to regulate the flow of storm water into the campus drain system, reducing the chance of overflow at the Pond. This will in turn help to mitigate the need for ever-larger storm water collection systems and waste water treatment facilities.

The building's mechanical and electrical systems will be constantly monitored and managed by the campus Energy Management System, providing real time information that will include alarms when systems are not functioning properly and when unnecessary energy is being used.

The building will also employ occupancy and CO2 sensors to regulate the amount of ventilation air sent to specific spaces, and to automatically turn off lights when rooms are unoccupied.

Toilet room fixtures will feature hands-free faucets and flush valves, and utilize low gallon per flush toilets and urinals.

During construction, the contractors employed techniques to reduce the amount of dust and fumes emitted both inside and outside of the building.

The contractors also employed methods to reduce the amount of waste materials that are generated on the site, and collect recyclable materials to reduce the amount of debris sent to landfills.

Almost every room is equipped with an exterior window to allow day lighting when practical.
South-facing windows are equipped with louvered sun shading devices that allow winter sun energy to be brought into the building, but shade the building from summer heat.

Operable (opening) windows are provided throughout the building to allow natural ventilation to be used when weather permits, and to offer an alternate way to evacuate fumes.

The building houses many functions that produce various fumes dusts and waste heat during programmed activities. The building is equipped with special exhaust and 100% Outside Air ventilation systems to protect the occupants from exposure to these byproducts of the work. Typically, these types of systems waste a tremendous amount of energy, so to combat those losses, the exhaust air is sent through an Energy Recovery Unit (ERU) to recapture the energy that would normally be lost in the ventilation process.

The use of walk-off mats at building entrances will reduce the amount of dirt, dust and pollens brought into the building.

Except for the building entrances, the building has hard polished concrete floors which will not collect dust, dirt and pollen, is easy to maintain with no use of solvent-based cleaning solutions, and does not emit any harmful gasses.

Concrete used in the building uses fly ash, a recycled byproduct of coal and oil combustion in place of some Portland cement. The use of fly ash improves concrete workability, and reduces the amount of water required in the concrete mix.

Studio Arts Building exterior rear.
Studio Arts Building front exterior
Studio Arts Building atrium with student at table.