Birmingham-Southern College: Lakeview Residence Halls
The Lakeview Residence Halls at Birmingham-Southern College serve as an example of how a traditional building can make small changes that result in a large environmental impact. The site chosen for the project was previously a surface parking lot that divided the campus’s residential quad from the Urban Environmental Park. The Residence Hall was envisioned as the next step in creating a true residential quad, focusing on the pedestrian and community aspects of the campus and limiting the vehicular traffic in the central part of the campus.
The design takes advantage of the views on campus and toward the City of Birmingham, focuses on developing community spaces both inside and outside the buildings and orients the buildings on the site in the most energy efficient way possible. Two separate buildings, both with their major axis running close to east/west, allow for the majority of the windows to be on the north and south facades, minimizing heat gain and providing views to both the City of Birmingham and the Urban Environmental Park. A courtyard, opening to the residential quad and views of the Park, creates a central community gathering space.
Throughout the design and construction process, preference was given to materials with recycled content, materials produced locally, and materials that could increase the long-term energy efficiency of the buildings. All interior finish materials, including carpet, adhesives, sealants, and paints have low or no volatile organic compounds, and all the millwork is formaldehyde-free. The Residence Halls use a Variable Refrigerant Volume heating and cooling system, with Heat Recovery capabilities to allow for simultaneous heating and cooling.
Centrally located high efficiency, gas hot water heaters with re-circulating pumps serve each residence hall reducing energy use and maintaining hot water near sources. Several other water conservation measures were put in place, including a 15,000-gallon cistern, which provides more than enough water to accommodate all irrigation needs for the site. Inside the Residence Halls, dual flush toilets, low flow shower heads and low flow faucets were installed reducing water consumption by over 38%.
2011 – LEED Certified, United States Green Building Council