SMU Caruth Hall: Exterior Cladding, Veneer Using Architectural Cast Stone Panels
The Caruth Hall building at Southern Methodist University (SMU) provides a home for the Caruth Institute for Engineering Education, dedicated to innovative math and science programs. The building serves as a gateway to the school’s east quadrangle. It was critical that the new building design and construction materials match the other buildings in this part of the campus, which are 75-80 years old.
In this case study, learn more about the process of realzing the design combining three different types of manufactured concrete stone panels – architectural cast stone, wet-precast concrete and GFRC (Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete). DOWNLOAD THE CASE STUDY to learn more about it, or see all details below on this web page.
PROCESS – DESIGN, MANUFACTURING OF PANELS FOR EXTERIOR STONE VENEER, CLADDING
The Advanced Architectural Stone (AAS) team collaborated closely with Hahnfeld Hoffer Stanford Architects to understand the design requirements of this project.
The team obtained stone samples from existing buildings on campus, and came up with the precise mix that would match the new architectural cast stone products with the surrounding historic buildings.
- After detailed analysis of engineering requirements, the team decided to use the dry-cast or vibrant-tamp method for manufacturing the architectural cast stone.
- For the stairs and load bearing columns in the front entry and amphitheater, wet-cast architectural concrete was used.
- The cornices on the eaves were created using thin architectural GFRC (Glass Fiber Reinforced Concrete, also known as light weight concrete) panels with pre-engineered, built in connections.
With a custom mix for casting each product, all three seamlessly matched in color and finish. The project took more than a year to complete. The computerized batch plant helped ensure consistency of products over time, taking into account moisture and seasonal variations.
The manufacturing of products was scheduled in line with the construction milestones.
As required, AAS staged and sequenced the delivery of products for simpler construction management at the project site.
CARUTH HALL AMPHITHEATER
The north side of the structure is designed with an amphitheater.
Originally, the open-air venue was designed with pour-in place concrete. Upon review by the campus design team, architectural cast stone was determined a better material, since it would coordinate with the overall design of the amphitheater. It also provided an upscale look for this part of the campus.
The benches in the amphitheater have a unique style; the large circular cast stone pieces for the benches were created using 3-D modeling and illustrations for analysis, followed by custom molds.
The veneer at the base of the amphitheater is also clad using architectural cast stone.
The flexibility to customize products with high precision and consistency helped designers make a contemporary statement with the design of the amphitheater.
Southern Methodist University (SMU) Caruth Hall – RESULT
The building was an environmentally conscious design exceeding LEED Gold Standards.
The school designers appreciate the long life, as well as the design flexibility and beauty of the architectural stone. The Caruth Hall aesthetically blends very well with the nearby historic buildings.
Location: Dallas, Texas
Architect: Hahnfeld Hoffer Stanford Architects
General Contractor: Austin Commercial
Masonry Contractor: Dee Brown Masonry