Handley McDonald

Structural Option
Claude Moore Medical Education Building
University of Virginia Charlottesville, VA

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Building Statistics


Name: Claude Moore Medical Education Building

Location: Campus of University of Virginia in Charlottesville, VA

Owner: University of Virginia School of Medicine

Occupancy: Busisness (Educational occupancies above 12th grade), Laboratory Space

Size: 58,000 sq. ft.

Number of Stories: five

Dates: Completed in August 2010

Cost: $40 Million construction cost

Delivery: Design-bid-build; bid decision made based half on price, and half on technical experience



Architects: CO Architects with Train and Partners Architects

CM and GC: Barton Malow Construction

Structural Engineer: Nolan Frisa Associates

MEP/FP: Bard, Rao, and Athansas

Civil Engineer: RMF Engineering



The Claude Moore Medical Education Building is meant to represent a significant leap forward in medical advancements, as well as the advancements in education at the University.  The most iconic architectural feature is the round curtain wall on the northern corner of the site.  Inside is the learning studio, which is an open classroom meant to promote interactive learning in small groups, as opposed to traditional lecture forums.  The exterior, beside the curtain wall, is mostly red brick, and blends in very well with the surrounding buildings, and connects to the Medical Research Five building next to it.  Below the learning center are two floors with mock patient rooms and procedural rooms for students to practice on standardized patients. In an effort to reduce the amount of energy used for both construction and maintenance of the building, a LEED Silver rating was achieved.

The only historical significance in the design of this building involves the 24 freestanding columns in the circular area that replicate the original columns used in the front entrance of the first UVA hospital.



The exterior of the building is made mostly out of red brick, except for the curtain wall surrounding the circular section of the building, and the plan South wall. As the building is supported by a steel frame, this brick is only used as a veneer. The glass used in the curtain wall is a low-E, insulated glass, to reduce the amount of heating and cooling load required in those large spaces.















  • LEED Silver Rating
  • Efficient HVAC systems
  • Cool Roof
  • Low VOC paints
  • Recycled content used during construction
  • Insulated Low-E glazing
  • Several water reduction techniques to decrease runoff
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    This Page was last updated on February 22, 2013 by Handley McDonald and is hosted by the Penn State AE Department