Case Study: Consulting Engineering

Student Recreation Center

University of LouisvilleLouisville, Kentucky

A Geothermal First at UofL

A busy metropolitan school, the University of Louisville witnessed the occupational usage of its Student Recreational Center grow so rapidly that the need quickly outpaced the facility’s capacity. They partnered with CMTA to engineer an energy solution for a new student recreation center.

The Challenges

  • Generating data-driven design solutions for a large project.
  • Creating a recreational space that was fun and functional.
  • Collaborating with a large team.
  • Completing the project with a short design period.
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These astonishing savings have led to an immediate return on investment, proving that more can be achieved with less. Created with Sketch.

The Solutions

From the first design meeting with the team at the University of Louisville, CMTA was able to bring statistical evidence to the table. Our research and experience helped generate high-quality designs from the beginning, and Data-Driven Design truly changed the trajectory of the project. We held First 30 charrettes in our corporate headquarters and took the client on tours of past projects to see real results firsthand.

We also proved our mettle in a collaborative environment, as we partnered with a national architect, a local architect, an engineer, and a very involved University architect to ensure that the new Student Recreation Center was as fun as it was functional. Large glazing designs, such as a 70 foot x 180 foot glass wall, were faced north to reduce solar heat gain while also increasing the quality of the work-out area in the gymnasium. Similarly, east-facing windows into high-activity areas were enhanced and coordinated with HVAC equipment to reduce first costs.

Research Pays Off

To further improve the facility’s energy efficiency, the design included radiant floor heat at the windows, dedicated outside air distribution, high volume/low velocity fans, and LED lighting throughout the double-stacked gymnasium. Research paid off as we engineered innovative ways to maintain thermal comfort and ventilation efficacy while minimizing the University’s initial investment.

The Results

CMTA relied on years of operational engineering expertise to reach National Energy Goals, surpassing the AIA 2030 initiative and achieving LEED Gold certification. Occupational use of the new facility has tripled when compared to the previous Recreational Center, yet energy costs were reduced to provide the University of Louisville with almost $100,000 of savings per year.

We are quite proud of what we were able to accomplish for the University of Louisville while staying within their mandated traditional budget. Thanks to their astonishing savings, the client’s return on investment has been immediate, proving that sometimes more can be achieved with less.

U of L Student Rec Center Energy Use

What does this data mean?
Baseline: AIA 2030 Annual Energy Use Goal
Actual: The measured energy use of this project