Evergreen Construction, serving as Construction Manager, has begun construction on the $8 million LEED certified renovation to the University of Georgia’s iconic Visual Arts Building.
Sustainability will be a major focus of the new work with the project aiming for LEED Gold certification. Among the project’s many unique features will be the installation of a chilled beam HVAC system making the building one of the first projects in Georgia and the first on the University of Georgia campus to use this sustainable climate control technology. Estimates show that this technology can reduce climate control costs by as much as 20% over traditional fan-driven HVAC systems. Mechanical & Electrical consultant Minick Engineering has also designed a number of other features which will ensure a significant reduction in the building’s carbon footprint including a photovoltaic solar array, enabling a reduction in overall electricity costs by harnessing solar power, and a water reclamation system which, among other functions, will capture storm water and re-use water runoff in order to reduce overall consumption.
LP3 Architecture, a joint venture of Atlanta architectural firms Praxis3 and Amy Landesberg Architects, was charged with preserving the unique character of the building while also enabling its adaptive reuse in an environmentally sustainable manner. While the structure will see minimal changes to the exterior, the interior will undergo a substantial renovation. Among the changes will be the conversion of the existing art studios into an Exhibition Gallery and Design studios. Also included will be the renovation of the building’s offices, restrooms and IT spaces to serve the College of Environment and Design’s Landscape Architecture, Environmental Planning and Historic Preservation programs.
Owner occupancy is scheduled to take place in September of 2012.