University of Illinois at Springfield architecture and engineering services

Project Summary

One of three University of Illinois campuses, the University of Illinois at Springfield (UIS) has approximately 5,000 students enrolled, offering bachelor’s degrees, master’s degrees and a doctoral degree.  UIS prides itself as a place to “earn a U of I degree in small classes taught by professors who know your name – and your strengths and your dreams.”

UIS selected Hanson to provide architectural and engineering services for its new University Hall – a 133,000-square-foot technologically sophisticated building, featuring classrooms and office space.

University Hall is centrally located on the campus’ quadrangle.  It houses the College of Business and Management, College of Liberal Arts and Science, Student Services, Capital Scholars Program, and the Office of Admissions and Records.  It also includes a lecture hall, computer laboratories, a distance-learning facility, modernized office space, seminar rooms, and technology-enhanced smart classrooms.

Hanson's services for University Hall included:

  • architectural design,
  • interior design,
  • structural, civil, mechanical, electrical and geotechnical engineering,
  • plumbing design,
  • fire protection,
  • cost estimating, and
  • construction observation and construction administration services.

As part of the project, the Hanson team also provided master planning and design for the quadrangle and colonnade.  The UIS colonnade includes a fountain and seating, and it serves as the campus’ symbolic center focal point along with the green spaces designed throughout the quad. 

Hanson performed a geotechnical investigation for the four-story building site, including soil and rock sampling for laboratory testing. With the results, Hanson provided recommendations for foundation support.

The building’s structural components include steel-framed construction, drilled pier foundations, and a moment frame lateral load resisting system.

To provide chilled water for air conditioning to the building, the project included upgrading the campus’ chilled-water plant and distribution piping. 

The project also involved the extension of the primary electrical system to the new building.  The building has a generator that is used to power elevators, fire pumps, fire alarms, IT, security systems and key HVAC components in emergency situations.  And to conserve energy, automatic motion detection sensors control room lighting.

The roofing system was an important part of the overall design – for both weather-tightness and aesthetics.  The durable, low maintenance design for the 33,000-square-foot roof features a combination of a “green” Modified Bitumen Roofing System in conjunction with pre-finished metal roof panels over the rooftop mechanical systems.

Additionally, University Hall has many technological advances for classroom learning.  Smart workstations provide wireless UIS network access.  Other technology-enhanced equipment includes document scanners, white boards, plasma screens with ceiling-mounted projectors, amplifiers and switchers, and ceiling-mounted speakers.