Margaret A. Cargill Natural Sciences and Health Building

Berea College

Project Name
Margaret A. Cargill Natural Sciences and Health Building
Berea College
Whole Building Commissioning
Completion Date


133,000 sq. ft.
Project Budget

The Project

Berea College envisioned a state-of-the-art instructional facility providing advanced science laboratories, nursing laboratories, interactive learning spaces, collaborative spaces, and planetarium.

Berea is committed to environmental stewardship in their operations and in their construction. The Natural Sciences and Health Building is a LEED Gold-registered project.

Berea wanted to ensure building performance for their facility. Special attention was required by the building envelope system and its role in humidity control with the project’s chilled beam mechanical systems. In addition, the project scope included commissioning of all building systems, lab systems, and process systems.

The desired outcomes from commissioning this project include:

  • Providing a safe and healthy facility;
  • Optimizing energy use;
  • Reducing operating costs;
  • Ensuring adequate O&M staff orientation and training; and
  • Improving installed building systems documentation.

The Work

Beginning in early design, Paladin worked with Berea and the design team to identify robust Owner’s Project Requirements.

From early design reviews through warranty phase performance reviews, system performance was verified and corrective action items taken.

During testing, the custom-manufactured windows required special attention. Upon initial test failure, the manufacturer, installing contractor, construction manager, commissioning provider, and owner representatives worked in combination to identify the sources of water leakage. Field modifications as well as proper manufacturer installation details allowed the showpiece windows to be functional as well as beautiful.

Extensive transition documentation and services encompassed custom-designed system overview training sessions for Berea’s maintenance staff. Paladin provided systems manuals, ongoing commissioning plans, equipment inventory lists, and equipment-specific preventative maintenance schedules to complete the close-out documents.

The Results

The project has achieved LEED Gold. All desired outcomes for Berea were reached.

Berea College installed a Nobel Prize—won by alumnus John Fenn ’37, for his notable work in chemistry—in the facility.