Bamboo

THE KELLER CENTER, THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO 

  • Location
    Chicago, IL
  • LEED Rating Platinum
  • Awards
    AIA Design Excellence Award – Honor Award for Distinguished Building, 2019
    ASHRAE Illinois Chapter-Excellence in Engineering Award, 2019
  • Owner
    The University of Chicago
  • Architect
    Farr Associates
  • Completed
    2018
To accommodate the new students, faculty, and programs, the Harris School of Public Policy will be housed in the Keller Center starting with the 2018-19 academic year – a dramatic adaptive reuse of the New Graduate Residence Hall, originally designed by renowned 20th Century architect Edward Durrell Stone.

The Keller Center achieved Platinum certification. To use 35.9% less energy than permitted by code, the building employs a full menu of energy efficiency strategies including daylighting, LED lights, and radiant heating and cooling. 9% of the total building’s energy is provided by grant-funded rooftop photovoltaic panels, a system planned to expand to provide nearly 18.5% of building energy. Additionally, rainwater captured on the roof is stored and used to flush toilets as well as for landscape irrigation. This has the dual benefit of reducing burdens on the City’s combined sewer system, while saving 525,208 gallons of fresh water per year.

The building is heated and air conditioned utilizing campus steam and chilled water. Multiple steam to hot water heat exchangers were provided. The building’s HVAC system includes ceiling-mounted heating/ cooling radiant panels and a dedicated outside air system (DOAS) for ventilation. A four-pipe system is being used for distribution throughout the building and a two-pipe changeover occurs within each zone. This allows for simultaneous heating and cooling between zones. Additionally, multiple variable air volume (VAV) air handling units with VAV boxes are provided to serve large areas such as the forum and classrooms.