Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry Structural Improvements

Los Angeles, California

LPA is currently collaborating with the University of Southern California (USC) to make structural improvements to a 180,164 square foot 4-story building. Constructed in three phases the original building constructed in 1952 was a single-story cast-in-place concrete building with a basement. In 1957, a two-story cast-in-place concrete and masonry addition was constructed at the east end of the original structure. In 1967, a three-story steel moment frame building was added over the original 1952 structure.

The university established budget is $26.5M and LPA developed five design options for consideration to meet the university’s goals of building resiliency (REDi Rating System) and compliance with current building codes. LPA and their structural engineering consultant, John A. Martin Assoicates (JAMA) developed seismic retrofit options to address lateral loads and improve the functional recovery and re-occupancy time of the building following a seismic event. In addition, the design options explored opportunities to meaningfully enhance the existing building architecture and function. Design options included an exoskeleton concept, integrated façade concept utilizing fluid viscous dampers, a primarily internal concept, the replacement of the 1957 two-story addition with a new four-story cast-in-place concrete addition, and an integrated facade concept utilizing shear walls. All five concepts were priced to allow the university to make an informed decision based on cost, aesthetics, and disruption to building occupants and operations during the construction phases.

The project started in July 2022 and design/permitting is anticipated to be completed by June 2024. The construction duration depends on the option the university selects. LPA also provided design options to restrain and replace HVAC and electrical equipment that will further improve building resiliency. MEP upgrades will be based on the structural improvement option the university selects and the final project budget.

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