Performance of a lifetime
The Curtis R. Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) is an experimental media and performing arts center that forms part of the Institute’s capital improvement campaign. Constructed on a difficult hillside position, the center occupies 160,000 ft2 and includes a 1,200-seat concert hall, 400-seat theater, and two state of the art studios that support performance arts and cutting-edge visualization research.
The design team was given a mandate by the university to achieve LEED Silver standard with this building, and BuroHappold Engineering was appointed to oversee the project to ensure LEED success and assist the client throughout the rating process. This involved defining sustainable design goals, identifying environmentally responsible design opportunities, explaining the intent of the LEED ratings and points system, and performing LEED assessment at various stages of design.
We applied computational fluid dynamics and thermal modeling to optimize environmental conditions throughout the building, aiding the design team in their selection and sizing of mechanical systems. Our expertise came to the fore in devising solutions for the large concert hall and theaters, which required specialized strategies to maintain the sensitive atmospheric conditions required in these larger spaces.
Our input throughout this project resulted in a contemporary performing arts center that exemplifies the highest standards of energy efficient design, without compromising occupant comfort and overall usability.
Services and approach
When we integrate our specialist teams around an approach, the benefits to the client multiply