Quiet coordination

Since each of the new projects is separately funded, two engineering firms were assigned to the tasks. Hankins and Anderson, Inc. (Richmond, VA) had handled the first phase of the College Center. So one would think that it would continue on as the engineering firm for the Phase 2 addition. Decisionmakers for the Leeolou Alumni Center project, on the other hand, engaged the services of R.G. Vanderweil Engineers, Inc. (Boston). "Both new buildings connect to either side of the existing College Center, each with its own engineer, requiring a great deal of coordination to integrate the different systems," Cline said. And quiet operation of the system was of great importance, according to one of the engineers who designed the system.

When it is fully complete, the two-story Leeolou Alumni Center will include a multipurpose great room with a bluestone fireplace, display space for revolving exhibits of Madison memorabilia, and an adjoining terrace. Two of the great room's exterior walls and one of the interior walls will be made primarily of glass, giving visitors a spectacular view over the rolling hills and meadows surrounding the 15,000-student campus in Harrisonburg.

Acoustic considerations

When RBI completes its work on the College Center and Leeolou Alumni Center, it will have devoted nearly two years to the projects, including the time it spent on Phase I of the College Center. Working with general contractor Nielsen Builders, Inc. (Harrisonburg, VA) and architect SmithGroup (Reston, VA), it handled all the mechanical work, including plumbing and hvac.

With acoustics a major concern, designers chose CertainTeed (Valley Forge, PA) ToughGard(tm) Duct Liner with Enhanced Surface in 1-in. and 2-in. thicknesses for the hvac ductwork. The fiber glass insulation liner is produced with a unique surface coating with moisture-repellent properties. Its "breathable" coating preserves the sound-dampening performance of the duct liner by allowing sound waves to pass through the open-cell structure and into the sound-absorbing glass fiber mat.

Working in RBI's 31,000-sq-ft shop, fabricators applied more than 14,000 sq ft of the ToughGard liner to the ductwork. According to Charlie Kyger, general manager of RBI's sheet metal shop, 10 to 15 people worked on the project on an almost daily basis. Liner was used on the rectangular duct, which averaged 48 by 30 in. in size. In some high-velocity, high-pressure portions of the College Center system, Hankins and Anderson consulting engineer Mike Mullins specified the addition of perforated metal liner for increased sound attenuation.

"We've used ToughGard for several years," said Kyger. "Our workers like using it since it cuts easily and produces less dust during the fabrication process."

The mechanical room of the Leeolou Alumni Center has one 37,500-cfm air handler, with air distributed through vav boxes. The College Center's lower level mechanical room has three air handlers, operating at 22,500 cfm, 26,200 cfm, and 8,200 cfm. Steam for heat is converted to hot water from the university's central plant. Chilled water used in air conditioning also comes from the central plant. An interesting side note is the fact that the city of Harrisonburg owns JMU's central steam plant, which is a trash-burning facility.

Jim Young, RBI's president, noted that RBI's association with JMU goes back a long way; most recently the two worked together on the completion of the College of Integrated Science and Technology's plumbing, hvac, and lab ventilation systems. "We enjoyed the challenge that these interconnecting projects presented us," Young said. "When everything is completed, James Madison University's students and alumni will be comfortable in their new buildings, no matter what the weather."ES