Westlake Reed Leskosky: Smithsonian Institution Renwick Gallery

Westlake Reed Leskosky: Smithsonian Institution Renwick Gallery


Main attic mechanical room. Courtesy: Kevin ReevesEngineering firm: Westlake Reed Leskosky

2016 MEP Giants rank: 86

Project: Smithsonian Institution Renwick Gallery

Location: Washington, D.C.

Building type: Museum

Project type: Existing building retrofit

Engineering services: Automation, controls; electrical, power; HVAC, mechanical; lighting; energy, sustainability; plumbing, piping

Project timeline: March 2012 to November 2015

MEP/FP budget: $12 million

Grand stair. Courtesy: Kevin ReevesChallenges

The building was originally completed in the 1870s and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It was the first purpose-built art museum in the U.S. and became a Smithsonian Museum in the early 1970s. The engineering approach required sensitivity to the historic nature of the building within very tight spatial constraints. Systems are required to maintain appropriate environmental control for a varied collection (ASHRAE Class A), coupled with high visitor traffic.


The team worked in a highly integrated manner to allow replacement systems to better use space within the existing structure without any modifications to the existing mass of the building. The team helped pioneer a new type of LED source to allow the gallery lighting power density to operate at approximately 1 W/sq ft while still providing sufficient beam control for highlighting objects from sources located relatively far away. The project has performed approximately 50% more efficiently, even with visitor attendance approximately four times higher than in 2012, prior to renovation.

Consulting-Specifying Engineer's Product of the Year (POY) contest is the premier award for new products in the HVAC, fire, electrical, and...
Consulting-Specifying Engineer magazine is dedicated to encouraging and recognizing the most talented young individuals...
The MEP Giants program lists the top mechanical, electrical, plumbing, and fire protection engineering firms in the United States.
Exploring fire pumps and systems; Lighting energy codes; Salary survey; Changes to NFPA 20
How to use IPD; 2017 Commissioning Giants; CFDs and harmonic mitigation; Eight steps to determine plumbing system requirements
2017 MEP Giants; Mergers and acquisitions report; ASHRAE 62.1; LEED v4 updates and tips; Understanding overcurrent protection
Power system design for high-performance buildings; mitigating arc flash hazards
Transformers; Electrical system design; Selecting and sizing transformers; Grounded and ungrounded system design, Paralleling generator systems
Commissioning electrical systems; Designing emergency and standby generator systems; VFDs in high-performance buildings
As brand protection manager for Eaton’s Electrical Sector, Tom Grace oversees counterfeit awareness...
Amara Rozgus is chief editor and content manager of Consulting-Specifier Engineer magazine.
IEEE power industry experts bring their combined experience in the electrical power industry...
Michael Heinsdorf, P.E., LEED AP, CDT is an Engineering Specification Writer at ARCOM MasterSpec.
Automation Engineer; Wood Group
System Integrator; Cross Integrated Systems Group
Fire & Life Safety Engineer; Technip USA Inc.
This course focuses on climate analysis, appropriateness of cooling system selection, and combining cooling systems.
This course will help identify and reveal electrical hazards and identify the solutions to implementing and maintaining a safe work environment.
This course explains how maintaining power and communication systems through emergency power-generation systems is critical.
click me