Western Carolina University – Harrill Hall

Cullowhee, NC

Project Summary

The renovation and new construction of a 38-year old residence hall resulted in LEED Gold certification.

Project Highlights

  • Designed to meet SCO General Statute 143/Senate Bill 668 requirements
  • Rooftop rainwater collection system
  • Solar panels to supplement water heating
  • Geothermal wells for heating and cooling


This project consisted of 72,000 SF of renovation and new construction designed to meet LEED Gold and SCO General Statute 143/Senate Bill 668 requirements. Optima provided mechanical, electrical, plumbing and fire protection engineering design to renovate the 38-year-old, 9-story residence hall, including energy efficiency improvements. Harrill Hall is a 400-bed facility that was first dedicated in April 1973. The project’s scope included extensive upgrades to outdated heating, ventilation, electrical and plumbing systems. Plans also called for the installation of a rooftop rainwater collection system to provide water for toilets, solar panels to supplement water heating, and geothermal wells for heating and cooling. Harrill Hall is the second building at WCU built to LEED certification standards. The renovations were completed in August 2012. (Rendering courtesy of Architectural Design Studio)

Areas of Sustainable & Resilient:
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