Ithaca, NY

Cornell University, Veterinary Research Tower


The Veterinary Research Tower is a nine-story structure that was built in the 1970s, and is clad with brick veneer and curtain walls. The walls were constructed without insulation or air barriers and single-pane windows and curtain walls. Cornell University commissioned a whole building condition assessment and design concepts for making code upgrades, improving energy efficiency, and addressing other maintenance. SGH assisted the architect by assessing the building enclosure’s condition and recommending repair options.

Highlights of our work include the following:

  • Conducting a facade and roof condition assessment using conventional and rope access techniques
  • Performing water testing and making observations at exploratory openings
  • Recommending repairs and maintenance for the windows, roofs, and facade
  • Evaluating the effects of adding insulation to the brick veneer walls both from the interior and exterior using transient moisture vapor drive analysis
  • Collaborating with the architect and MEP designer on whole building energy analyses by providing anticipated u-factors for both existing and proposed building enclosure components

Project Summary



Completion Date


Construction Value
Repair & Rehabilitation | Preservation
Building Enclosures | Performance & Code Consulting | Applied Science & Research
Anshen + Allen
Specialized Capabilities
Condition Assessments | Preservation | Energy & Sustainability | Environmental Simulations

Key team members

Susan  Knack-Brown
Susan Knack-Brown
Building Technology Division Head, Boston
Peter  Nelson
Peter Nelson
Senior Principal