Aquinas College Hall of Science

Addition and Renovation

This project was broken into two phases: Phase I - a 50,000-square-foot addition to and Phase II - 40,000-square-foot renovation.

PHASE I - Addition to the existing building

Aquinas College Albertus Magnus Hall of Science’s addition featured a conventional steel structure with an exterior that utilized a combination of brick, manufactured stone, insulated metal panels, and clear anodized aluminum storefront and curtain-wall systems.

The new electrical service was installed in the basement of the existing building on the opposite side of a 70-foot tall atrium. The only way to get from one side to the other was with two small walking bridges. This setup resulted in the development of a creative and intense underground system to allow Town & Country Group to capture the new utilities and minimized the number of disruptions to the occupied science lab.

The addition included a new 2500-amp and 480-volt service. Town & Country Group installed primary medium voltage to a new high voltage switch on site. Additionally, a 300kw diesel generator was added 300 feet from the building to provide emergency backup power for the building’s laboratories. Phase I featured a stand-alone fire system, lighting control system, 70’ atrium, multiple labs with special equipment to hookup and wire, as well as an electrical distribution system. 


PHASE II - Renovation of the existing building

Phase II began in May 2019 and required a complete electrical renovation, including new electrical panels and removal of the original lead-lined primary cabling and the existing electrical distribution system. Town & Country Group also prepared for a triple-climate greenhouse.   

Town & Country Group also handled the installation of the fire system alongside Riverside Fire. We also installed an intense lighting control system with a dolly-type switch control and multiple photo controls for light level monitoring and adjustments. 

The 70-foot atrium presented multiple challenges. The area’s focal point featured an intricate lighting design with remote light drivers and custom fixtures designed to look like a cell structure. Laser detection for smoke monitoring was implemented as well to ensure the building would egress smoke fumes in case of a fire and allow the students to exit safely.

Phase II had unknowns due the tight eight-month schedule. Electrical rough-ins and finishes were performed in a tight space to accommodate materials requiring off-site storage and frequent deliveries.