1110 W. Belden, Chicago Map
The Andrew J. McGowan Science Building is a new 5-story, 130,000 sf academic building to be located immediately south of the existing William G. McGowan science building which opened at DePaul's Lincoln Park campus in 1998. McGowan South will house the DePaul Chemistry Department and accomodate the expanding Environmental Science and Biology programs with several sloped-floor classrooms, computers labs, faculty offices, and teaching and research laboratories. The project is seeking LEED Silver certification, partly due to popular demand from the faculty.
The project's campus location allows for several unusual opportunities. There is no new parking for the building - an existing campus parking garage provides all necessary parking. Most green projects designate specific central recycling storage space, but here it isn't necessary in the building proper because recycling is collected daily by the university and stored at another location. The university is considering adopting a green housekeeping plan for this building, which could then easily spread to the entire campus - a great example of small first steps eventually having a big impact.
The project is also following some recommendations of the Laboratories for the 21st Century (Labs 21) Environmental Performance Critera. For example, a chemical resource management plan will be implemented to ensure laboratory chemicals are handled and disposed of properly. Although chemical usage for any single lab bench or experiment seems small, the aggregate can be significant, and managing this waste is a major challenge for large research universitiies - sometimes resulting in EPA fines. Labs21 is an excellent initiative - a collaboration of the U.S. EPA and DOE which is driving laboratory designers to produce much higher-performing buildings through education and research.
Energy efficiency is difficult to achieve in laboratories, which move, heat, and cool large amounts of air through exhaust hoods. McGowan South is designed to be 15% more efficient than the fairly stringent requirements of ASHRAE 90.1-2004. A variety of factors contribute, but the most expensive and complex is the use of variable volume laboratory air supply and exhaust combined with heat recovery from the lab exhaust air. There are a variety of other green features in the building, including (but not limited to) native plantings, a green roof, and lab casework built from FSC-certified wood.
McGowan South is scheduled for completion in January 2009. Other project team members include commissioning agent GRG (an extremely vital role in MEP-intensive laboratories), general contractor The Meyne Company, MEP engineer WMA, LEED Consultant X-nth, lab consultant Earl Walls Associates, civil engineer Bollinger, Lach & Associates, structural engineer CS Associates, and landscape architect Hitchcock Design Group.