Northwestern’s Ryan Center Achieves LEED Gold

Northwestern University’s Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan Center for the Musical Arts has been awarded LEED Gold certification under the LEED 2009 New Construction & Major Renovation system, exceeding the project’s original goal to achieve a Silver-level LEED certification.

Situated to maximize views to Lake Michigan in Evanston, Illinois, the new high-performance building combines all programs at the School of Music while exhibiting best practice environmental design strategies to minimize resource dependency and contribute positively to its regional context.

Working closely with the design team, Atelier Ten provided Environmental Design Consulting and Energy Analysis for this sleek glass-encased 155,000-square-foot building. Atelier Ten developed a high-performance double-skin façade to control heat loss and gain to optimize thermal comfort, integrated chilled beams and high-efficiency lighting to achieve energy savings, and optimized the atrium design to incorporate visual comfort with daylight. This new addition captures views of Lake Michigan as well as the downtown Chicago skyline.

Between integrating the high-performance façade and innovative systems, the building archives 33% energy savings with an anticipated design energy EUI of 72.5 kBtu/sq ft/yr (as analyzed in the final proposed LEED energy model) that is well below the ASHRAE baseline building EUI of 108.6 kBtu/sq ft/yr, and the national average site EUI for university educational buildings of 120 kBtu/sq ft/yr.

Atelier Ten’s team includes Associate Director Ben Shepherd from the New York office and Principal Environmental Designer Younha Rhee from the London office.