Unique Tilt-Up Concrete Elements Help Office Building Achieve LEED Silver Rating

The challenge:

Constructing a 78,952-square-foot, three-story office building that incorporated unique tilt-up concrete elements and achieved LEED Silver rating

The players:

American Constructors LP
Meadow Burke
White Cap

The process:

The Dalchau Service Center Building D in Austin, Texas, -- winner of an Excellence 2014 Tilt-Up Concrete Association Achievement award in the office division -- was constructed for the Lower Colorado River Authority (LCRA) to house various engineering departments. This building is a three-story, 78,952-square-foot structure providing Class A office space and multiple conference rooms with integrated audio/visual systems.

Early in design, tilt-up was selected, as it was decided to incorporate the concrete and steel structural elements as a key part of the architecture. To ensure quality, American Constructors self-performed all of the concrete work on this project.

The signature tilt-up element is a 13-inch-thick, 82,300-pound, non-insulated feature panel at the main entry. Other unique tilt-up elements are on the northwest and southwest corners of the building where two pairs of L-shaped panels were created utilizing two different casting techniques. To achieve the highest quality finished product, all of the electrical and special systems' conduit and box rough-in were installed in the panels prior to pouring. The end result was of such high quality that the architect deleted the interior paint on the tilt-up and left them in an as-cast natural finish. The exterior panels were finished with a combination of light and medium sandblast finishes. These finishes were carried into the exposed interior lobby wall panels, where the light and medium sandblasts were executed in a grid pattern.

The LCRA Dalchau Service Center Building D achieved a LEED Silver rating from the USGBC.

Project Specifics

  • Project wall area: 31,200 sq. ft.
  • Project floor area: 78,952 sq. ft.
  • Project footprint: 26,800 sq. ft.
  • Tallest panel: 49 ft. 11 in.
  • Widest panel: 37 ft. 2 in.
  • Largest panel: 1,498 sq. ft.
  • Heaviest panel: 164,800 lbs.
  • Longest spandrel panel: 23 ft. 4 in.