Duke West Campus Union
The Duke West Campus Union functions as the prominent social hub and innovative dining program for the Duke student body.
West Campus Union had its own challenges and obstacles that were above and beyond the norm.
One of the biggest challenges on DWCU was space constraints. Through coordination we were able to identify several areas before construction began.
Valves on the chilled water piping had little access for maintenance crews. We were able to resolve this issue through coordination by moving variable frequency drives off the wall onto strut stands to allow for chilled water piping to run stacked on the floor along the wall. This gave the maintenance crews accessibility to all valves
On most floors there was limited space above the celing for MEP trades to install their systems. We were able to work closely with the design team and architect to ensure in those locations, we were able to install our systems.
Minimum clearance above main switchgear with structure posed challenges with trying to install feeder conduits. With identifying this, we were able to develop a solution by installing a high hat on the switchgear. To make this work, gear in the main electrical rooms were adjusted to coordinate the high hat with existing structure and to ensure all working clearances were obtained.
From the project start there was ample amount of congestion both interior and exterior of the building. Due to lack of space for any type of office or connex we worked with makeshift offices within the building. There was constant ongoing large scale demo on the existing historical walls and floors, which hindered office coordination and work. Additionally, there was steel and glass being picked and dropped by a crane during a large portion of the job. So the lack of working space, material storage space, and daily navigation of the project was very difficult.
In the basement, water intrusion was an issue from the start creating obstacles from underground rough in thru powering up the substations. It forced us into creative problem solving around the gears and ATS equipment to make them accessible and code compliant with clearances. Some of our solutions were to use large, fabricated junction boxes and to add fiberglass to walls to bring the existing space up to code electrically, mechanically, and also for building code.