Ross & Baruzzini Inc. project profile: Luddy Hall — School of Informatics, Computing & Engineering

Luddy Hall — School of Informatics, Computing & Engineering, Bloomington, IN

By Ross & Baruzzini Inc. August 13, 2019

Engineering firm: Ross & Baruzzini Inc.

2019 MEP Giants rank: 80

Project: Luddy Hall — School of Informatics, Computing & Engineering

Location: Bloomington, IN, U.S.

Building type: Educational facility

Project type: New construction

Engineering services: Automation, controls; energy, sustainability; fire, life safety; HVAC, mechanical

Project timeline: June 2014 to July 2018

MEP/FP budget: $12,000,000


The architecture of the building made design of HVAC and fire protection systems challenging. The majority of the interior consisted of exposed structure (no ceilings) and glass partition walls, the exterior building envelope had large expanses of glass and there was a multistory lobby in the center of the facility. HVAC ductwork, piping and air terminals had to blend into the architecture, exterior zones with glass had to be effectively heated and interior glass partitions had to be fire rated. Additionally, the project was tasked with achieving LEED Gold certification.


Addressing the challenges above required attention to detail. Air distribution was split into multiple systems to accommodate the geometry of the building and ductwork, piping and air terminals were carefully coordinated to maintain the desired aesthetic of minimally exposed systems. Radiant heating panels were employed through the perimeter of the building to effectively heat the areas with large expanses of glass. Water curtains were employed at interior glass partitions requiring a fire rating. Exhaust air energy recovery, extensive use of occupancy sensors to control lighting & setback HVAC systems and low-friction loss duct design (fan energy optimization) contributed to this building successfully achieving LEED Gold certification.