Center for Computing & Data Sciences

Rendering of Center for Data Sciences & Computing

At 19 stories, the Center for Computing & Data Sciences will become the largest fossil fuel free building in the Boston area. The design of the building is essential for BU to meet its Climate Action Plan goal of net zero emissions by 2040. Its innovative design relies on deep wells to harness the thermal capacity of the earth for heating and cooling and eliminate the need to connect the building to a gas line. Electricity generated by renewable sources with the BU Wind project and from solar power generated elsewhere on campus, this building will be 100% fossil fuel free and Zero Net Energy.

Geothermal cooling process

Geothermal cooling process

Geothermal heating process

Geothermal heating process

KPMB Architects’ design minimizes energy consumption using energy efficient strategies such as external sun shading devices, triple glazing on the windows, enhanced heating, ventilating, and air conditioning (HVAC) systems, and high efficiency LED lighting. These strategies help the building become one of the most sustainably designed and built buildings in Boston. While the unique architecture alone will make a lasting impression, the Center for Computing & Data Sciences’ innovative heat and cooling system will be the largest geothermal project in Boston. With a 31 wells, each 1,500 feet deep, the system is expected to provide over 300 tons of heating/cooling capacity. Heat pumps use the temperature differential the earth provides to draw heat from the ground in the winter and to expel heat in the summer. Simply put, it transfers heat from one place to another in an efficient, net zero emissions operation.

This Center positions the University as an institutional leader in both interdisciplinary research and sustainability. It will bring College of Arts Sciences departments of Mathematics and Statistics, Computer Science, and the University’s Hariri Institute into one research facility.

Quick Facts

Total Building Area: 305,000 sq ft

Architects: KPMB Architects

MEP Engineers: BR+A

LEED Consultant: The Green Engineer

Landscape Architects: Richard Burck Associates

Geotechnical Engineers: Haley & Aldrich

Structural Engineer: LeMessurier

Civil Engineer: Nitsch Engineering

General Contractor: Suffolk Construction

Geothermal Contractor: Skillings & Sons