Local & Consulting ArchitectShears Adkins Rockmore Architects (SAR+)
Architect of Record, Design ArchitectLake | Flato Architects
San Antonio, Texas
Sheet Metal Contractor/ManufacturerRoof Check Inc.
General ContractorPCL Construction
Structural EngineerKL&A Engineers & Builders
Designed to foster community connections, the new Burwell Center for Career Achievement Center at the University of Denver focuses on student career development, employer engagement, and alumni activities. The building stands at a key campus nexus between the traditional core and the growing urban edge, helping engage students within the university community and beyond.
Design architects Lake | Flato and consulting architects Shears Adkins Rockmore worked with contractor PCL to create an example of sustainable architecture that seeks LEED v4 Platinum certification. The teams collaborated to express the building’s connection to the campus and Denver’s mountain setting, creating a biophilic space that harmonizes with the natural and built context.
The building’s extensive copper cladding and details connect with the many other buildings on campus that feature this durable material. The University of Denver has a rich architectural history that promotes the use of copper at roofs, wall cladding, copings, and downspouts. These building systems benefit from the use of copper, due to self-healing properties that allow it to protect building substrates.
Burwell utilizes 16-ounce sheet copper with 95% recycled content to form the wall panels, copings above the slate-clad walls, and many of the structure’s windowsills. Fabricator Roof Check utilized custom-folded profiles for these elements as well as for through-wall scuppers and down-spouts across the project.
The unique shape of the Burwell Center – including its piano curve, where much of the copper wall systems and coping are found – leveraged copper’s inherent malleability and enabled use of many custom profiles. Bending copper around the curved piano profile enabled seamless integration of wall panels and windowsill to ensure a durable, architecturally sound wall system.