The Kohl Building serves as the innovative new home of the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music's acclaimed Department of Jazz Studies and its academic programs in music history and music theory. The new 37,000 SF facility interfaces with the adjacent Conservatory complex and creates an elevated pedestrian link that ties in three buildings. A massive cantilevered roof, three stories high, hovers in the air between the new and old buildings, providing an iconic social space/lounge... more
The Kohl Building serves as the innovative new home of the Oberlin College Conservatory of Music's acclaimed Department of Jazz Studies and its academic programs in music history and music theory. The new 37,000 SF facility interfaces with the adjacent Conservatory complex and creates an elevated pedestrian link that ties in three buildings. A massive cantilevered roof, three stories high, hovers in the air between the new and old buildings, providing an iconic social space/lounge that is the "soul" and creative hub of the building. The program features a world-class recording studio; flexible rehearsal and performance spaces; teaching studios and practice rooms; a glass-enclosed social hub for interaction; and a library/archive. This award-winning project meets challenging program goals, including stringent acoustical and technology requirements, as well as the highest standards for environmental stewardship and sustainability that are central to Oberlin College's mission. less
Westlake Reed Leskosky
(ASHRAE Zone 5A)
45.5 kBTU/yr-gsf (estimated)
117 kBTU/yr-gsf (estimated)
3472 MMBTU (baseline)
314.4 MMBTU (proposed)
491.4 MMBTU (baseline)
215.6 MMBTU (proposed)
32.9 MMBTU (baseline)
1.3 MMBTU (proposed)
293.4 MMBTU (baseline)
235.4 MMBTU (proposed)
400.8 MMBTU (baseline)
471.2 MMBTU (proposed)
237.5 MMBTU (baseline)
237.5 MMBTU (proposed)
89.7 kGallons (baseline)
57.6 kGallons (proposed)
Oberlin College was an inspring Owner to develop a new building for, due to its committment to environmental sustainability. The Lewis Environmental Studies Center developed by William McDonough still serves as one of the seminal projects of the green building movement. The Bertram and Judith Kohl building required the consideration of many factors, including acoustics, energy efficiency, and thermal comfort.
The acoustic requirements of the project required specially constructed exterior and interior walls. Assemblies include an exterior thermal/vapor/water/air control layer, with an acoustic control layer further inboard.
Fenestration systems incorporate insulating glass units with a high-performance low-e coating and a custom frit pattern. The assembly U-value is 0.4 Btu/h-sf-F. The SHGC is 0.26. A fabric interior curtain system allows for additional solar attenuation, while still maintaining views to the exterior.
Viracon is one of the leading architectural glazing suppliers. The VE1-2M series was one of the first widely used products in low-e insulating glass units, with a high visible light transmittance and a shading coefficient of 0.45. Low-e coating technology continues to advance. We recommend looking carefully at a product's light-to-solar gain (LSG) factor, particularly for ASHRAE climate zones 1, 2, 3, and 4. The higher the LSG value, the more efficient the glazing unit at rejecting solar energy, while allowing the visible spectrum to pass through. Designers should use care in selecting the appropriate color, outside reflectivity, inside reflectivity, and visible light transmittance. Do not rely solely on small glass samples to determine appropriateness for an application. The human eye is not able to distinguish differences in tint when the glass covers the entire field of vision. Viracon's color selection site can be found here: http://www.viracon.com/index.php?option=com_viracon&view=colors Other major competitors include PPG, Guardian, and Old Castle.
Approximately 50% of the building program is provided with heating and cooling from a plaster-embedded capillary mat radiant system. Ventilation air is provided from a dedicated Munters Wringer air-handling unit. This decoupled ventilation approach allows ductwork requirements to be reduced, allowing for increased reverberation volume in music rooms. The radiant system provided additional mass, important to the acoustic requirements of the project.
Heating and cooling is provided by water-source heat pump equipment tied to a GeoExchange loop. WRL advises significant caution in obtaining ground thermal performance data as early as possible in the design process. The thermal conductivity of the ground at the site was found to differ significantly from data available for the region, resulting in the need for additional well depth.
WRL is a strong proponent of radiant cooling and heating, due to efficient heat transfer, impact on radiant temperature, and quiet operation. Systems can be developed using aluminum radiant panel systems, pre-manufactured composite systems, and plaster-embedded capillary mat systems. The Beka system is the predominant manufacturer of capillary mats, also known as the Karo system. The system originated in Germany and has only recently made an entrance to the US market. A plaster-embedded application allows panel systems to be coupled to thermal mass, creating a higher effective cooling/heating capacity than a free-standing system. Design teams have often faced challenges implementing this technology, due to a lack case studies and pricing history in the United States. Representation in the United States is not extensive. Significantly more application information can be found at: http://www.beka-klima.de/en/ Radiant technology requires an integrated design approach for application: space cooling loads need to be kept below 30 Btu/h-sf through careful control of building enclosure and lighting heat gains.
The Munters Wringer Plus utilizes a air-to-air plate type heat exchanger to enhance dehumificiation capability from a standard cooling coil. Designers should use care to specify units matched to a building's space heating and cooling system. These units are can either be designed to deliver neutral-temperature ventilation air or can be designed for a traditional 55F supply air temperature to contribute to space sensible cooling.
The building incorporates a Siemens Apogee building automation system.
LEED-NC v2.2 Gold
48.8%, ASHRAE 90.1-2004