University of Cincinnati Health Sciences Building
Award of Merit

Owner: University of Cincinnati
Lead Design Firm: Perkins and Will
General Contractor: Messer Construction
Structural Engineer: Schaefer
Civil Engineer: EMH&T Engineers
MEP Engineer: CMTA Inc.
Architect of Record: Moody Nolan Inc.

Messer Construction and design firm Perkins and Will came together to create an integrated health campus with the construction of the University of Cincinnati Health Sciences Building (HSB).

The LEED Gold-certified building appears as a monolithic concrete structure but conceals a variety of thermally broken systems, including double slabs, structural thermal isolators and insulated precast concrete panels. It includes a four-story atrium, 1.5-acre green space, 11 classrooms and 130 administrative or faculty offices.

Before any work could be performed, one of the biggest challenges was just getting to the building. According to Todd Sadler, Messer project manager, around $32 million worth of work was spent renovating a 100-year-old pharmacy attached to the future HSB. Once the pharmacy building renovation was complete, the team worked on the existing structure to modernize the new health building.

Messer and Perkins and Will did extensive mock-ups and 3D modeling and laser scanned existing conditions as well as their work put in place. Drones were used to monitor the installation of the facade, and thermal imaging machines were used throughout the project.

“It was in an area of campus people didn’t really go,” says Nick Rosian, Messer’s project manager. “But the kids made the building come alive. We were surprised to see students congregate on the grand staircase. And it’s now one of the buildings that when I have family in town, I drive them by.”

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