George Mason University Student Union Building I

Fairfax, VA

Brett M. Robinson - Penn State AE Senior Thesis - Construction Management


Brett Robinson Bio

Building Statistics

Thesis Abstract

Technical Assignments

Thesis Research

Thesis Proposal


Final Report


Senior Thesis e‐Studio


Thesis Proposal

Thesis Proposal Revised

Thesis Proposal Revised with Addendum (2/18/10)

The thesis proposal is intended to provide an overview of the four topics that will be researched in the spring semester for the final thesis report on the George Mason University Student Union Building I project. Based on the previous research of challenges faced for the SUB I project team, this proposal’s main focus will be tailored to the surrounding occupied facilities and the small project site. The following four topics will each be dedicated to these challenges. A timetable and weight matrix will be included to further verify the procedures to accomplish the proposed solution. The four topics will include:

  • Critical Industry Issue – BIM/IPD in Design-Build
  • Analysis I – In-Depth Safety Plan
  • Analysis II – Emergency Power Analysis
  • Analysis III – Metal Panel Portion of the Building Envelope

Thesis Breadth Topics

Mechanical Breadth
Based on the Mechanical Breadth Analysis rubric, I will research the effects of Emergency Power to the occupied GMU Student Health and Wellness Center. Through this research I will answer the following questions:

  • How crucial is it to maintain operation during power outages?
  • How quickly must the emergency power come on?
  • How long should the emergency power be available for?
  • What locations within the facility will and will not be powered by the emergency power?
  • What Contingency Plan is already in place for the Health and Wellness Center?
  • What are the GMU Testing procedures for Emergency Generators?

This research will also look at the minimum design, installation, and testing for the new emergency generator that will be installed on site.

Structural Breadth
The breadth areas that will be considered in the metal panel building envelope analysis will be structural. The structural system will be impacted due to the change from metal panels to either precast architectural panels or a prefabricated building envelope system. The new imposed loads will need to be considered when installing the new façade to the building. To accomplish this, an analysis of the load paths will be performed for the new systems. If the existing structural system is not capable of supporting the proposed new loads, one option is to resize the structural members to allow for the imposed loads. Both value engineering and schedule reduction are crucial when considering these façade and structural changes.




Note: While great efforts have been taken to provide accurate and complete information on the pages of CPEP, please be aware that the information contained herewith is considered a work‐in‐progress for this thesis project. Modifications and changes related to the original building designs and construction methodologies for this senior thesis project are solely the interpretation of Brett Robinson. Changes and discrepancies in no way imply that the original design contained errors or was flawed. Differing assumptions, code references, requirements, and methodologies have been incorporated into this thesis project; therefore, investigation results may vary from the original design.
This page was last updated on February 19, 2009, by Brett Robinson and is hosted by the AE Department ©2009