Hensel Phelps, Mithun Win UC San Diego Student Housing Project

Date Posted: 01.05.2017

News Release

LA JOLLA, Calif. – The University of California, San Diego (UC San Diego) awarded the second phase of their East Campus student housing program to the design-build team of Hensel Phelps | Mithun in late November. The UC San Diego Nuevo West project is a $142 million, 442,000 GSF Graduate Student Housing project consisting of more than 880 beds and related amenity spaces in two main buildings.

“We’re very pleased to have selected the team of Hensel Phelps and Mithun as our partners to deliver the next housing project here at UC San Diego,” said Mark Cunningham, assistant vice chancellor, Housing, Dining and Hospitality Services at University of California, San Diego. “I believe this team will provide a true human-focused design delivered through cutting-edge construction practices which will without doubt transform the on-campus living experience for the students who will reside there for decades to come.”

The design-build collaboration between Hensel Phelps and Mithun builds on the team’s collaboration with the adjacent Mesa Nueva Graduate and Professional Student Housing project to create a new graduate research community. The team’s collaborations also include the recently completed Mesa Court Towers for the University of California, Irvine (UCI).

“Our team has accrued an invaluable body of knowledge through our shared collaborations – bringing a tested and successful track record of collaboration,” adds Bill LaPatra, a partner at Mithun.

The graduate student housing at Nuevo West creates a new campus heart on the East Mesa that is a keystone in the future campus master plan for graduate student housing. Nuevo West incorporates a rich composition of social and academic amenity spaces that serve this growing East Campus population. This design also accommodates temporary housing and community program space for medical center patients and families undergoing treatments at UC San Diego. This symbiotic program relationship is reflected in a facility that provides shared community amenities as well as buffered spaces specific to each program use. The grand opening of the new student housing at Nuevo West is anticipated in 2019.

UC San Diego’s new student housing at Nuevo West will consist of:

  • 880+ beds with 80 beds for families and patients undergoing medical treatments at the adjacent UCSD medical center
  • 1,350 parking stalls
  • Ample outdoor gathering spaces
  • Market, café, and numerous social amenity spaces
  • LEED Gold target building and site design

The Nuevo West project will be directly adjacent to the Phase 1 project, Mesa Nueva Graduate Student Housing, which is currently in construction with a completion in 2017.

“Nuevo West plays a crucial role as a gateway from the main campus to the East Campus. Currently, a canyon separates East Campus from West campus. A planned pedestrian and bicycle bridge will terminate in a central ‘town square’ space – creating a powerful arrival experience that welcomes residents and visitors to this new cohesive campus community,” explains Brendan Connolly, a partner at Mithun.

Nuevo West is designed to meet LEED Gold certification and utilizes passive solar and thermal stack effect principles to achieve high-performance building energy and comfort goals. A cast-in-place concrete structural frame creates thermal mass that provides passive cooling. A transpired collector system will enhance ventilation by heating air contained in an internal “solar chimney” that creates a stack effect to pull in cool air through openings at the end of corridors and common spaces. The project’s design directly responds to its function with façades that direct the westerly prevailing winds to cool the building with natural ventilation. Building orientation also minimizes heat gain and glare. Solar thermal collectors located on the building roof provide solar heating for domestic hot water. The project is planned for future photovoltaic panels on the parking garage for solar electricity. Three generous outdoor rooms are landscaped with native and drought-resistant plantings that are irrigated with reclaimed water.

“We take pride in being part of the San Diego and La Jolla communities, and we love working on the UC San Diego campus. The people representing Housing, Dining and Hospitality and Facilities Design and Construction are truly talented individuals and are a pleasure to have as clients. I feel very fortunate to be able to extend that working relationship for another few years,” said Hensel Phelps operations manager Nick Trammer.

About the University of California, San Diego (UC San Diego)
The University of California, San Diego was founded in 1960 as a forward-thinking research institution for graduate and undergraduate study. Scripps Institution of Oceanography, founded in the early 1900s and now a division of the university, served as a catalyst and an incubator for UC San Diego’s initial growth. UC San Diego has grown to encompass six undergraduate colleges and eleven divisions and schools. Our vision is to be a student-centered, research-focused, service-oriented public institution that provides opportunity for all. Named in the top 15 research universities worldwide and regularly recognized among the top 10 public universities in the nation, UC San Diego fosters a culture of collaboration that sparks discoveries, advances society and drives economic impact.

About the Hensel Phelps | Mithun Design-Build Team
Hensel Phelps is recognized as one of the premier general contracting firms in the United States since 1937, specializing in planning, building and managing facilities in every building sector, including health care, aviation, higher education, federal and justice. Our people are committed to delivering the highest quality solutions and creating the most innovative and efficient facilities for our clients, from conception through construction, operations and asset management. As one of San Diego’s largest construction employers, our firm has been an engaged community partner in San Diego for over 30 years.

Mithun is an integrated design firm dedicated to creating positive change in people’s lives. With offices in Seattle and San Francisco and a staff of more than 120, the firm’s innovative and collaborative spirit encompasses planning, urban design, architecture, landscape architecture and interior design services – a multidisciplinary approach that unites human and natural systems within the built environment. The firm has been recognized with five prestigious Committee on the Environment (COTE) Top Ten awards from the American Institute of Architects (AIA), and is ranked among the top 25 design firms in the U.S. by Architect Magazine. Mithun is a national leader in programming and design of student housing and dining centers, with a portfolio that totals more than 19,000 beds on 25 campuses.