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ASU building receives praise for technological, sustainable features

The College Avenue Commons building on the Arizona State University Tempe campus was chronicled in a three-part feature by Arizona Builder’s Exchange: “Completion: College Avenue Commons is Campus Life Center and Technology Demo from Ground Up.”

The series covered the building’s technological and sustainable features, as well as the support it has gathered from the local construction community.

The first article, “Part 1 in a Tour of ASU’s Most Technologically Advanced Building,” appeared June 24, 2014, and quoted Morgan R. Olsen, ASU’s executive vice president, treasurer and chief financial officer, who remarked on the building’s versatility:

“The building is a design and technology marvel. Students will learn construction engineering and management at Del E. Webb School of Construction, including technology that allows them to learn how sun, wind, storm, light and heat affect a large, urban building. College Avenue Commons starts on the landscape and streetscape around the building. ‘We wanted an urban landscape with a pedestrian feel,’ says Olsen.”

The second article, “‘Professor Commons’ and the Future of Building Design,” ran July 1, and began with a quote about the building’s environmental sensors from Bruce Jensen, interim associate vice president of facilities development and management at ASU:

“This may be the first time that architects and contractors are going to be able to know whether a building they designed works as it’s supposed to,” said Jensen. “This building is loaded with sensors that measure temperature and light on its skin and in the rooms. We have our energy calculations; now we have actual real-time data to see if those calculations are correct.”

The article also highlighted College Avenue Commons’ additional sustainability features, which include:

• a mix of LED and fluorescent lighting
• low-flow fixtures
• sensors that analyze the differences between building skin temperature and the temperature of its interior walls
• room occupancy drives temperature and lighting requirements
• first desert-climate building in which chilled beams provide passive air coolings

The final article, “It Takes a Village (or an industry) to Raise a Building,” appeared July 8. Edd Gibson, the director of the ASU School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, noted that the building project is supported by the construction industry and has been in the works for many years.

The five-story, 137,000 gross-square-foot College Avenue Commons’ first two levels encompass public space, while the top three levels house classrooms and the Del E. Webb School of Construction.

Read the entire July 8 article and find links to both the June 24 and July 1 articles at this link:

College Avenue Commons will be open for the fall 2014 semester, and several events to celebrate its completion are planned for the fall, including a grand opening for the Sun Devil Marketplace, ASU’s next-generation college store. The College Avenue Commons Streetscape will allow closure of College Avenue between Sixth and Seventh Streets for special events, creating a plaza for community celebrations. The Plaza will be supported by two new restaurants in the University Annex building across College Avenue, to the east of College Avenue Commons. Snooze and Postino Wine Bar will be opening this fall.

More information about the College Avenue Commons building project is available online at this Web page: The following link includes more information about the College Avenue Commons Streetscape:

Article Source: Arizona Builder's Exchange
Wendy Craft

Marketing and communications manager, Business and Finance Communications Group