This page was last updated on 10/13/10 by Bryan Darrin and is hosted by the AE Department ©2010

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 or 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 Bryan Darrin. 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.

General Building Data

Millennium Hall

34th Street and Race Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104

Drexel University

Educational Residence Hall

153,000 Gross S.F.

18 Stories Above Grade/ 18 stories Total

$42 Million

Building Timeline: (August 2006 - August 2009)


Primary Project Team:

Owner - Drexel University -

Architect – Erdy McHenry Architecture, LLC -

Const. Manager - InTech Construction - http:/

Structural Engineer – The Harman Group, Inc. -

Structural Consult – Arup -

Civil Engineer – Pennoni Associates, Inc. -

MEP Engineer – AKF Engineers -

Code & Zoning Requirements

The Millennium Hall is zoned in the IDO (Industrial Development District), in the city of Philadelphia. No historical requirements were enforced on the construction of Millennium Hall. The major code and design standards include:

IBC 2006


ACI 318-05

AISC 13th Edition, 2005

AWS D1.1-2004


The Millennium Hall building uses many passive systems to improve the buildings overall sustainability. To manage storm water on the already dense campus, it employs both a green roof and multiple storm water management basins. A green roof is located on the first story roof over the office space, next to the tower. By placing it here, it also improves the sight from the rooms directly adjacent and above this roof. Water not used here, is then sent to the underground basin for storage, where it can later be used for other functions. Elsewhere in the building, water efficient fixtures and toilets reduce the amount of water wasted during everyday use. The aluminum rain screen panels provide some shading from direct heat gain into the individual rooms, reducing the overall building loads.


Two main systems make up the building’s structure. The majority of the ground floor is a steel moment frame supporting a slab on metal deck. The design of the tower utilizes a reinforced concrete one way slab system. Two radial lines of columns circle the central core and provide all of the strength for the tower’s gravity load. These 22” x 58” columns spaced approximately 10’ apart extend the entire seventeen story height.  Beams connect each column and provide strength for the supported slabs, which cantilever outward 15’ to the exterior of the building. Lateral forces are resisted using ordinary concrete shear walls and moment frames.


The MEP system for the building uses a highly efficient design. Geothermal water source heat pumps provide cooling in the summer and heating in the winter. During the winter months, the temperature of the water is maintained with three 600 MBH natural gas boilers. Energy recovery units have variable frequency drives on the supply fans. 89 cooling units are located throughout the building ranging in size from 15. to 5 tons.


The incoming electrical source is a 13.2 KV service and is provided from PECO.  This 480Y/277V 3-Phase 4 Wire system is then stepped down to a 1500 KVA transformer which is located in the main electrical room on the ground level. A 225 KVA transformer provides power for the fire pump and other life safety equipment. A 400 KW 480Y/277V 3-Phase 4-Wire generator feeds power to these emergency feature in the case of power failure.


The building uses very efficient lighting throughout the building significantly reducing the lighting load. Linear fluorescent and compact fluorescent fixture are used throughout most of the buildings interior. These take the form of both down lights and recessed fixtures. The exterior of the building uses compact fluorescent and metal halide fixtures. All of these types are 277 volt luminaries.

Fire Protection

Fire protection for the buildings structure is achieved through the use of reinforced concrete. This provides the required two hour rating.


Students enter the building through the main entrance on the ground floor that opens into the main lobby. Located in the center is the elevator core which contains three separate elevators. One of these is oversized to move larger furniture items. Each elevator opens into the student floors main hallway. This hallway runs in a complete loop around the floor. From this hallway there is access to two separate stairwells on either end of the building which provide a means of egress to the ground floor and out.