University of Florida Murphree Hall Renovations


The project accomplished a complete renovation of this historic dormitory building with a capacity of 348 students. The most significant challenge faced was the long-standing fire code deficiency of only one exit from every room. The building is comprised of Sections A-M, each with four student rooms and a bathroom on each floor around a single exit stairwell. Past attempts to create horizontal corridors on each floor resulted in an unacceptable loss of rentable space. Preservation considerations precluded adding 14 exterior stairs. Moses Engineering had previously negotiated an Alternative Approach to Life Safety patterned after NFPA 101A and obtained State Fire Marshal approval. Murphree Hall is in the most desirable location on the UF Campus, but lacked air conditioning and adequate electrical power. The renovation provided heating and cooling fan coil units for each room with central ventilation air units in the attic for building pressurization. Stackable fan coil units, customized to meet UF Housing’s requirements resulted in significant construction cost savings. The electrical service was upgraded and circuits were added to each room, along with CATV, telecommunication and data outlets. All bathrooms were completely renovated to meet ADA requirements. The building was also fully sprinklered. All exterior windows were replaced with careful attention to historic preservation and energy impact (infiltration, shading coefficient and U-value). A detailed field survey was conducted during the Christmas break of 2003 since the building was occupied. Room-by-room measured drawings were made to allow integration of the new systems with the existing finishes and floor plan. Bidders were then prequalified based on documented experience in historic preservation. This resulted in four bidders and a final project that was in budget and on time for the subsequent school year.

OwnerUniversity of Florida

Project Size$6.1 Million


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