Projects

Villanova University

CHANGING THE CAMPUS LANDSCAPE PROGRAM

 

  • Project Overview
  • Project Details

LOCATION:
Villanova, Pennsylvania

COMPLETED:
October 2013

PROJECT SERVICES:
Preconstruction and Construction Services

AWARDS:
2014 General Building Contractors Association "Best Green Building Project"

Torcon was the Construction Manager for Villanova University in a program to develop a pedestrian oriented campus phased over three summers. By modifying the layout of the campus grounds, this initiative will improve the quality of life for Villanova community members and enhance the visitor experience. The planned modifications, which are largely driven by research and by student feedback, aim to create a campus core that is vehicle-free, pedestrian-friendly, more accessible to people with different mobility needs and more aesthetically beautiful.

Redirecting both vehicle and pedestrian traffic, Torcon created a campus core, allowing students, professors and local residents to enjoy a park like setting in the center of the educational hub. Accessibility for those with special mobile needs was also dramatically improved.

During Phase 1 of construction, Torcon was awarded Gold in the Paving & Landscape category from the Brick Industry Association. This tremendous achievement was mirrored by the tremendous effort of Torcon and their subcontractors by laying over 550,000 brick pavers. Key plazas, walkways and stair sets were equipped with snowmelt to provide a safe environment for pedestrians as well as cutting costs associated with snow removal.

Torcon also oversaw the replacement of 2,750 linear feet of steam line that provides heating to buildings in the center of campus.  In addition, a new storm water management system was created. Three underground detention basins were installed, the largest of which totaled 6,500 sq. ft.

Aside from providing the campus with more functionality, the improvements created a visually appealing environment for students to enjoy. Torcon was able to preserve the mature trees on campus and even planted 208 new trees. An impressive 67,000 plants and shrubs were also added to the mix. The stunning arrays of landscape architecture, newly designed walkways and overall sense of cohesion, Villanova now boasts one of the most beautiful college campuses in America.

Phase One: May to November 2011
The first phase encompassed the transformation of Vasey Plaza, which was widened to allow ramps on both sides for different mobility needs. New hardscaping provides convenient access to Vasey Hall from all levels. The space is now greener and includes an expanded outdoor dining and gathering area. Renovations to Sheehan and Sullivan residence halls were also completed.

In addition, the University installed new bollards and check points to re-route vehicular traffic. The innermost driving route is closed to regular traffic, while emergency and service vehicles continue to have full campus access at all times.

Phase Two: May to October 2012
The second phase of the project transformed the Kennedy Oval—the area between Kennedy, Corr and Dougherty Halls and the Connelly Center— into an open and attractive gathering place. This phase included improvements to the Sullivan-Sheehan Quad and a turnaround on Dougherty Drive.

Phase Three: May to October 2013
The final phase included a transformation of the areas around Corr and Alumni Halls. The Grotto was moved to the area between St. Rita Hall and Austin Hall, and defined by an archway. The end result resembles a small amphitheater designed to hold approximately 50 people.