UC IRVINE MIDDLE EARTH CAMPUS EXPANSION

The Middle Earth Campus Expansion at the University of California, Irvine (UCI) is a 215,000 SF amenity-rich high-density housing development in the academic core of campus. Designed to help UCI achieve its goal of carbon neutrality by 2025, the project targeted LEED Platinum certification from the outset and 20% more efficient performance than the state’s aggressive Title 24 energy code.

At a Glance

MA Engineers
Irvine, CA
Education, Government & Education
215,000 SF
LEED, v2009 (Platinum)
  • Energy Modeling
  • LEED Consulting

The Challenge

Led by design-build collaboration Mithun and Hensel Phelps Construction, Stok was engaged by MA Engineers to provide energy modeling and guide the team through challenging LEED energy credits to achieve Platinum certification for this vibrant campus development.

  • Work closely with UCI, Mithun, and MA Engineers to achieve the project’s energy goals
  • Take the lead on navigating the complex new CEC-provided Title 24-2016 code compliance software to provide clear and consistent guidance regarding the energy design
  • Remain communicative with the project team while developing and troubleshooting the energy model, to lead the project beyond the 20% below code energy reduction goal through detailed HVAC modeling, highly efficient lighting design, and optimized building envelope to meet UCI’s requirement—an especially difficult feat given the challenge of significant energy reduction in a dormitory
  • Lead the pursuit and thorough documentation of all LEED Energy and Atmosphere credits for the project’s LEED Platinum certification, receiving no review comments from GBCI. The documentation of this naturally-ventilated building was made even more complex by the project’s connection to UCI’s highly-efficient cogen central plant.
Jim Wahlmeier
Jim Wahlmeier
Mechanical Engineer, UC Irvine
“Stok’s technical expertise coupled with thorough knowledge of LEED and clear guidance on energy efficiency issues was a big help in reaching our internal UC energy goals as well as supporting our overall LEED Platinum effort.”

By the Numbers

Energy cost savings for LEED
68%
Reduction below California’s strict Title 24-2016 energy code for UCI’s energy requirement and Savings By Design
34%
Above operable window requirement for natural ventilation
40%
Domestic water savings
40%

The Solution

EFFICIENT ENERGY

Through high performance features including a 50 kW rooftop grid-connected PV system, rooftop solar hot water collectors, advanced HVAC design, LED lighting, natural ventilation, vegetative roofs, efficient plumbing fixtures, drought-tolerant landscaping with irrigation provided by reclaimed water, stormwater terraces, and recycled and FSC-certified construction materials, the project achieved, the project achieved huge energy savings.

A MARK OF EXCELLENCE

Led by design-build team Mithun and Hensel Phelps Construction, the project received the Design Excellence Award and the Regional Award from the Design-Build Institute of America’s (DBIA) 2020 Western Pacific Region Design-Build Awards.

IN CASE YOU’RE WONDERING

The name is meant to pay tribute to JRR Tolkien’s enduring stories and was selected when the campus was originally designed in the 1960s. Mount Doom Student Residences just didn’t have the same… ring to it.

Project Leadership

Tim Hreha
MBCX | ENERGY MODELING | ZNE | LEED
UCI Middle Earth Expansion (3)