South Campus Commons

College Park, MD

BKM provided MEP design services for the South Campus Commons project that provides student housing adjacent to the historic South Campus area of the University of Maryland. The project incorporates seven new buildings into the existing campus by extending pedestrian and vehicular corridors and enhancing site vistas.

These four, five, and six-story buildings are not typical dormitories.  They are fully furnished two or four-bedroom apartment suites with separate bedrooms for each student (totaling 2,626 private bedrooms), full kitchen, laundry facility, and living-dining area. Each unit is complete with campus telephone, data hook-up, and cable television. Extensive common space to support the honor students’ Living-Learning program, student lounges, and administrative offices are also provided.  Extensively landscaped outdoor areas provide opportunities for social interaction and outdoor study. The seven-building project was delivered in three design phases. Due to budget constraints the mechanical/electrical systems for the first phase was different than that of phases two and three.

Phase 1 includes Buildings 1, 2 and 3 for a total of 1,036 beds. HVAC systems include two-pipe fan coils serving the apartments with separate packaged rooftop units to supply the corridors. DX split systems serve the offices, lounges, and first-floor common areas. A water-cooled chiller with cooling tower and distribution pumps is located in a basement mechanical room in Building 1. Dual temperature supply and return piping was extended from Building 1 to Building 2, and all heating and cooling central systems are sized to serve Building 2.  Campus steam is used to supply steam-to-water heat exchangers for heating. Domestic hot water is provided by central steam-to-water heat exchangers.  Dedicated fans are provided for each area requiring exhaust.

Phase 2 includes Buildings 4, 5 and 6 for a total of 789 beds. HVAC systems include DX split system heat pump units serving each apartment. Supplemental electric heating coils are provided to offset the heat pump during low temperature operation. Condensing units are located on the roof.  Separate packaged rooftop units serve the corridors and lounge areas on each floor. Individual electric water heaters serving each apartment provide domestic hot water. Dedicated fans are provided for each area requiring exhaust.

The last phase, Building 7, was delivered ahead of schedule, under budget, and attained LEED Gold instead of the required Silver that was indicated in the project solicitation. The sustainable design solutions featured on this project include high efficiency heat pumps, lighting fixtures, and domestic water heaters. Low-flow plumbing fixtures are provided for all faucets, toilets, and showers.