Setting Benchmarks in Student Accommodations

University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, Michigan
168,000 square feet
Integrated Design Solutions
Construction Management-at-risk
Date Completed:

In fall of 2012, Walbridge wrapped up the $44.5 million reconstruction of Alice Lloyd Residence Hall, the youngest of four student dormitories located in the campus’ Hill neighborhood. Built in 1949, Alice Lloyd is one of four residence halls Walbridge restored. Its renovation proved to be the most involved.

Walbridge created new spaces on the lower level and first floor of the 168,000-square-foot building that include an art studio, multiple open lounge areas, small and large group study rooms, a house kitchen and small dining room, a living room with a fireplace, meeting rooms and a resource room. High-end furnishings and energy-efficient fixtures were incorporated throughout the renovation.

The project also brought improvements to plaster, new flooring in dorm rooms and all new bathrooms in student living quarters. The team integrated individualized climate control systems in each dorm room, improved information technology infrastructure throughout the building and installed all new mechanical systems, including upgraded electrical and fire suppression systems.

Challenges and Solutions

Before implementing the new spaces, Walbridge had to completely demolish the building’s two lowest floors. Creating the additional spaces and increasing heights in existing spaces was the biggest challenge, requiring the project team to remove columns and span existing tunnels while maintaining safe work environments inside and outside the building.

All of the work had to be done without impacting Alice Lloyd’s neighbor, the historic Detroit Observatory (built in 1854 and lauded as the oldest observatory of its kind in the United States).

Walbridge delivered the completed project within a fast-track, 14-month schedule.

Walbridge garnered a Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) Michigan Voluntary Protection Program STAR Safety Award for its performance at Alice Lloyd.