Higher Education

Boston University – New Balance Field


The Boston University “New Balance” Field and Parking Facility is an example of a truly innovative and successful planning and design process that has resulted in the efficient use of urban space for a multi-program, mixed use facility. The existing surface lot has been transformed into a state-of-the-art, turf athletic facility with a 350 space parking facility beneath the field, for which DESMAN has provided structural engineering services. The physical appearance of the facility expresses the enthusiasm of a world class collegiate sporting venue while the building also addresses the very pressing parking demand of a major university in an urban environment.

Through the use of precast construction, the design was able to address several aspects of the project, including long-span construction to aid the functionality of the parking component along with aesthetically pleasing brick and limestone façade finishes that articulate the architectural expression of a collegiate environment. The benefits of casting the precast pieces off-site, under a controlled plant condition, resulted in a very durable, high quality product that enabled the superstructure components to be constructed simultaneously with the foundations, allowing a significant reduction in the duration of the project schedule.

While there are no specific criteria for LEED certification of a project like New Balance Field, the project closely followed LEED guidelines. Among the many sustainable features of the field, a rain-harvesting technology was put in place beneath the garage. With a 15,000-gallon capacity, the tank will capture rain water, store it, and reuse it for irrigation, which will help reduce the overall water consumption on campus. Drip irrigation was also installed. This will help to further conserve water, as it is more efficient than typical irrigation systems. The civil and landscape design employees a storm-water management strategy creating a 25% decrease in the volume of storm-water runoff.

Photo credit to Clough Harbor & Associates

Other features include:

  • Bleacher-style seating for 500 people
  • Parking for 10 buses
  • 240’x234’ synthetic turf playing surface configured for field hockey, lacrosse, and soccer
  • 1.289 acres

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