Updates from GNCB

Cornell Law School Academic Center Honored by BSA Design Awards

  • By GNCB
  • 06 Mar, 2017

Ithaca, NY

The Cornell Law School Academic Center was recently awarded the 2016 Education Facilities Design Award by the Boston Society of Architects . The expansion of the Law School included the renovation of the existing 1930s Myron Taylor Hall and the new design and construction of an underground addition. The expansion consists of steel framing supported by concrete foundations. The 54-foot, clear-spanning structure was designed to support a green roof and traffic loading, allowing the University to maintain the use of the existing greenspace.

The renovation of Myron Taylor Hall included underpinning foundations to provide a new sub-grade story at the same elevation as the addition. A monumental staircase was added to the space which now ties together the new and historic spaces without increasing the footprint of the building. To facilitate the design, GNCB also designed and monitored shoring efforts for the multiple upper library stack levels to ensure continued integrity of the historic structure.

The Law School Expansion and Renovation, originally designed to be LEED Gold, is LEED Platinum-certified and provides Cornell with a 170-seat lecture hall and auditorium, faculty offices, classrooms, and a new foyer. The project was completed in 2013.

Architect: Ann Beha Architects

Contractor: Welliver

Click here to view the Time Lapse Video created during the construction of the new underground addition: http://www.lawschool.cornell.edu/alumni/Building-Livecam.cfm
Rendering of the Underground expansion by Ann Beha Architects
Soldier piling and lagging was used to allow construction of perimeter concrete retaining walls
Steel framing supports a reinforced concrete slab sized to support the green space and truck-loading above.
Upper floors of Myron Taylor Hall are supported with structural stacks – a series of built-up steel posts supporting the floor framing and books.
GNCB designed shoring to support the upper stack levels and allow a new sub-grade story to be constructed at the same elevation as the new addition.
By GNCB 17 Nov, 2017

GNCB attended the ribbon cutting ceremony for the Sayebrooke Village Elderly Housing Expansion project this month. The project broke ground earlier this year and now contributes an additional 15 units to the highly popular complex on Sheffield Street.

The buildings are a mixture of single- and two-story wood-framed structures on concrete slabs-on-grade. GNCB provide structural engineering and geotechnical engineering services for the project. The expansion was a Connecticut Housing Finance Authority (CHFA)-funded project.

Architect: Wiles + Architects

Contractor: Haynes Construction

By GNCB 14 Nov, 2017

Ms. Zoe Laird of Ohio has been hired as a Design Engineer at GNCB. Ms. Laird graduated from the University of New Haven (UNH) this May with a Bachelor’s of Science in Civil Engineering.

As a student, Ms. Laird was an active member of UNH’s student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers’ (ASCE) Concrete Canoe team, and was a member of the student chapter of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE).  

Ms. Laird’s senior design project was to design a four-story steel-framed boutique hotel with an underground reinforced concrete parking garage for UNH’s Hospitality and Tourism department. She performed much of the structural analysis and structural design for the building, and performed hand calculations to verify the computer model.

Past work experience includes an internship with the Ashtabula County Engineer’s Office in Jefferson, OH; tutoring entry-level engineering courses at UNH; acting as counselor for Camp GEMS (Girls in Engineering, Math, and Science) at Ohio Northern University; and several summers at YMCA Camp Fitch holding various positions including Tech Focus Counselor.

By GNCB 30 Oct, 2017

Amy Jagaczewski , GNCB Engineer, attended this year’s Association for Preservation Technology International (APTi) Conference in Ottawa, Canada . This year’s conference, themed CAPITALizing on Heritage, was a joint conference between APTi and The National Trust of Canada in honor of Canada’s 150th Anniversary. Approximately 1100 delegates from over 20 countries attended, including engineers, architects, preservationists, owners, historians, students, craftspeople, and technicians.

The APTi Conference offered professional development opportunities sorted into seven tracks depending on attendees’ backgrounds and interests. Ms. Jagaczewski attended presentations on the investigation, analysis, planning, and design of heritage structures as well as case studies on successful implementation of structural and preservation engineering principles. Topics directly corresponding with current GNCB work included reversibility of retrofits for exposed structural framing, management and assessment of historic coastal structures, and practices for analyzing unreinforced masonry buildings in moderate seismic zones.

By GNCB 18 Oct, 2017

The Northampton Community Arts Trust began occupying their newly renovated building at 33 Hawley Street in Northampton, MA this fall. The prefabricated metal building was originally built in the late 1980s and required structural upgrades to support the new use and energy-efficient design. The 25,000 square foot building will be used by the Trust to support education, rehearsals, and performances for varying forms of art.

GNCB provided structural engineering and geotechnical engineering services for this project during the initial investigation, design phases, and construction phases. Structural work included supporting new design features as well as addressing deficiencies in the existing gravity and lateral framing systems for modern loads. Geotechnical investigations included interior soil excavations to confirm the layout of existing foundations and subsurface characteristics for the installation of a new elevator pit.

Improvements to the roof framing involved the addition of 50-foot long steel trusses supported on new steel columns at the centerline of the building. The new steel off-loads the original steel bent frames to meet modern building loads and allow the installation of solar panels and a future suspended catwalk system for the black box theater. Steel x-braces were installed between the new and existing perimeter building columns to improve the building’s lateral system. GNCB also provided structural designs for the monumental stair and mezzanine and the new front entrance vestibule.

Architect: Thomas Douglas Architects

Contractor: D.A Sulivan & Sons, Inc.

Steel Fabricator and Erector: Dublin Steel Corporation

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