UCLA Pauley Pavilion, Los Angeles, CA

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Originally built in 1965, UCLA recognized the need to modernize its athletic facilities to complement its athletic program and improve spectator experience and safety. Syska Hennessy Group was retained by NBBJ to serve as the MEP engineer on the 240,000-sf Pauley Pavilion renovation and expansion at UCLA.

The team faced an aggressive schedule and several unique challenges due to the age and historical significance of several architectural elements.

To accommodate the additional seats, an updated fire alarm system was provided with an innovative active smoke exhaust to increase safety in the event of a fire within the facility. Additional louvers for smoke discharge were carefully integrated into the existing architecture, including motorized actuators to open both windows and doors to allow fresh air into the arena as well as to provide an egress path for occupants.

Not only was the project a renovation of an existing facility, but over the last 50 years, Pauley Pavilion had become a hub for the MEP utilities of four surrounding buildings and Spaulding Field. Service upgrades, repairs, isolation, temporary services and coordination were all performed within the interconnected web of surrounding buildings. Chilled water, steam, domestic cold/hot water, storm/sanitary sewer, emergency/non-emergency power and broadcast/IT/security services were all addressed as part of the design.

Exceeding Client and Owner Needs
Each stakeholder had their own priorities that they wanted to see implemented in the design. Syska effectively gathered input from all stakeholders to guide our client, NBBJ, as well as the owner, UCLA Capital Programs, to engineered solutions that took the best of both worlds.

“Due to the complex nature of the project—which included the complete renovation of the MEP infrastructure—Syska’s expertise was critical to the success of the project during all phases of the design and construction.”
Robert C. Mankin Jr., AIA, LEED AP Partner, NBBJ

ENR California, Best Projects, Sports/Entertainment Award of Merit, 2013
USGBC Los Angeles, Sustainable Innovation Award, 2014
Athletic Business, Facilities of Merit Award, 2013

LEED Status
LEED© Gold

240,000 sf

Regents of the University of California


PCL Construction

Lighting control design
MEP/fire protection
CFD modeling
Mixed-mode ventilation
Day lighting analysis (Ecotect)
CFD analysis (Airpak and CONTAM)
High-efficiency heating and cooling