Project Close-Up: Irvine Spectrum

Channeling the Rich History of the Irvine Ranch

When we were approached for the new Courtyard by Marriott project at the Irvine Spectrum, the team wasn’t seeking just another hotel in their vast international list of properties. They imagined a structure that would represent the Southern California debut of Marriott’s latest Gen Next design. This Gen Next concept is Marriott’s response to next generation travelers seeking choices and flexibility. Marriott’s answer provides great room lobby experiences with style, comfort, convenience, and entertainment. Tapping into the rich history of the Irvine Ranch through art, photography, and the use of recycled woods intermixed with high tech finishes and materials; this design features a reinvented lobby centered on the concept of refreshing business, fusing high-tech, high-style, and greater functionality.

Building an eight-story mid-rise of this caliber in Irvine has its obvious obstacles: earthquake stringent building codes, fire protection, strict water quality objectives, and high cost of materials. After just a few months into the project, our civil and structural engineers designed an innovative 20,000-cf bio-retention basin to integrate seamlessly with the existing adjacent landscaping as well as fulfill the water quality standards set by the city. Additionally, we determined that by creating a distinctive lateral design of the conference center, the lateral forces on the building could be dragged into the post-tensioned concrete tower, eliminating the need for a costly seismic joint.

The key to any successful hotel project is to get the project completed on time and the rooms filled with guests. As such, the project was on an accelerated schedule from the start. In response; master planning, entitlements, design, and permitting were all accomplished in only nine months. Phased construction was able to start with early grading permits followed immediately by underground utility permits and offsite street improvement approvals before the design and building permits were finished. With construction expected to take less than 12 months, the new Irvine Spectrum will be ready for guests to enjoy by next summer.

Project Team:

Owner: RD Olson Development

Architect: WATG

Contractor: RD Olson Development

About the author

Amy Pugh

Amy Pugh, Director of Marketing | As the Director of Marketing and Communications, Amy thrives on seeing the strategic process intermingle with the creative process. She enjoys participating in the blog as an outlet to showcase DCI as thought leaders and utilizing her skill set to help exhibit the truly great work that our employees do as engineers. In her spare time, Amy enjoys spending time with her family, traveling, cooking, and indulging in Pinterest.

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