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DCD Design Cost Data

Career Achievement Center, University of Denver

Lake|Flato Architects and Shears Adkins Rockmore (SAR+)

Posted: December 30, 2022 | Projects

The new Burwell Center for Career Achievement is the first LEED® Platinum  level certified project on the University of Denver campus. Designed to facilitate connections within the University of Denver community, the center is focused on student career development, employer engagement and alumni activities.  

Photograph courtesy of Frank Ooms

The project hosts diverse meeting  rooms, a classroom, and open plan  administrative offices. It features a main level indoor-outdoor gathering area and  an upper level suite for visiting executives,  lecturers, and donors. The Burwell Center includes extensive daylighting and a central lounge on each floor creates a welcoming environment with views to the campus and neighboring city. 

The mass timber structure contributes to a warm and tactile experience that connects visitors to the natural environment. By leveraging this innovative structural system, the construction schedule was reduced by 6 weeks through the prefabrication and erection of the frame reducing overall construction costs to within $5/SF of a comparable steel structural system. 

The structure of the building is constructed entirely out of sustainably harvested timber using an advanced design and construction process. It eliminates a significant source of carbon in the structure and provides a naturally beautiful interior finish for future generations. 

Thoughtful design was used to maximize views, comfort and minimize energy usage to 54% of what other similarly sized buildings use. The building also uses a combination of evaporative cooling and dedicated outside air to reduce energy usage and keep the inside air fresh. Photovoltaic (solar) panels on the roof offset building energy usage. 

Some of the sustainable strategies implemented to achieve LEED certification include: 

• Using low-emitting materials to reduce the harmful effect of VOCs 
• Capturing and managing 100% of stormwater onsite to replicate natural hydrology 
• Incorporating cool roof strategies to reduce the urban heat island effect 
• Using native and adaptive landscaping to reduce the amount of potable water needed for irrigation 

The building serves as a learning lab for students studying sustainability in construction. The University partners with the Real Estate and Construction Management program as well as the Sustainability program to conduct research on the energy efficiency of the building over time and ensure both staff and visitors learn sustainability best practices while enjoying all the building has to offer. 

The success of the Burwell Center for Career Achievement was the result of thoughtful contributions from University leadership and meaningful collaboration between the Lake|Flato and Shears Adkins Rockmore (SAR+) teams.

Lake|Flato Architects
311 3rd Street, San Antonio, TX 78205

Architect of Record
Shears Adkins Rockmore (SAR+)
1550 Wynkoop Street, Suite 100, Denver, CO 80202

Structural Engineer
1717 Washington Avenue, Golden, CO 80401

Mechanical Engineer
Af filiated Engineers, Inc.
1726 Champa Street, Suite 100, Denver, CO 80202

Fire Protection Engineer
Advanced Consulting Engineers
3900 S. Wadsworth Boulevard, Suite 595
Lakewood, CO 80253

General Contractor
PCL Construction Services, Inc.
2000 S. Colorado Boulevard, Tower 3, Suite 2-500
Denver, CO 80222

Acoustic Specialist
K2 Acoustics
5777 Central Avenue, Suite 225
Boulder, CO 80301

LEED Consultant
Green Ideas Building Science Consultants
Boulder, CO 80301

Location: Denver, Colorado
Date Bid: Apr 2019
Construction Period: April 2019 to July 2020
Total Square Feet: 20,035
Building Sizes: First floor, 7,612; second floor, 7,689;third floor, 7,689; tower, 45; total, 23,035 square feet.
Total Building Height: 62'
Number of Buildings: One.
Basic Construction Type: New/Mass timber.
Foundation: Pier & grade beam, slab-on-grade.
Exterior Walls: Metal stud framing, Densglass®, liquid vapor barrier, slate tile.
Roof: Membrane.
Floors: Cross-laminated timber, topping slab.
Interior Walls: Metal stud drywall.

Click here to view the full cost details for this project in the January/February 2023 issue of DCD