Case Studies

Papadakis Integrated Sciences Building, Philadelphia

Papadakis Sciences Building - Philadelphia

Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA
Architects: Diamond and Schmitt Architects
General Contractor:  Turner Construction
Owner/Operator:  Drexel University

The Papadakis Integrated Sciences Building is Pennsylvania’s and Drexel University’s newest landmark for scientific research and integrated science. The $69-million Building serves as the new home of Drexel’s biology department and its 44 research and teaching laboratories. It sets a new benchmark for sustainable design at US universities and the hallmark of  this sustainability  is a  75 ft tall living biowall situated in its 4 story atrium. The biowall is not just the only such structure of its kind at a U.S. university, it is North America’s largest. Alongside the living wall is a DNA-inspired spiral staircase.  In the end, it is expected that the building will be eligible for LEED Gold status.

Adjacent to a major roadway, and subway tunnel a vibration study was conducted by HGC Engineering to quantify the expected degree of vibration transmission to the building structure, and input was provided toward the structural design.  We also delivered additional acoustical services to select HVAC silencers and other noise control features, and to identify architectural requirements for the exterior envelope and to acoustically separate classrooms and laboratory spaces from adjacent areas.

We also conducted ambient noise measurements in accordance with the Philadelphia noise ordinance to determine appropriate noise level criteria at other nearby buildings. An environmental noise model of the building’s outdoor noise sources and the neighbourhood was constructed to predict its noise impact on the environment.

Acoustical Consulting Services Included:
  • Environmental Noise and Vibration Study
  • Building Services Noise and Vibration control (HVAC Systems, Chillers, Cooling Towers, etc)
  • Vibration Isolation of Equipment
  • Acoustical Privacy Between classrooms, offices, labs, meeting rooms etc.
  • Noise and Vibration Control of Common Spaces
  • Building Vibration Assessment
  • Façade and Glazing Specification
  • Shop Drawing Review
  • Site Inspections





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