US Air Force Academy Fairchild Hall Facilities Master Plan

Colorado Springs, Colorado

High priorities: Creating an environment that promotes educational excellence


US Air Force Academy

Project Size

1.7 Million sf

Professional Services

Facilities Master Planning

RNL developed a facilities master plan for approximately 1.7 million square feet of academic space on the US Air Force Academy’s Colorado Springs campus, which was designated a National Historic Landmark in 2004. The academy is currently ranked as one of the top higher education institutions in the country and has reached a critical point in their history where their facilities must keep pace with the exceptional academic standards they have achieved. This study encompasses the three primary classroom, lab and faculty office buildings: Fairchild Hall, Aeronautics Research Lab and the Consolidated Education and Training Facility (CETF). The project focused on capturing the strategic vision of the Academy to understand how existing and future academic and research initiatives can be supported and enhanced by the campus facilities.

The scope of work included a full inventory of physical building systems and assessment of space in the facilities; a comprehensive analyses of the facilities as compared with regional and national peer institutions; the development of a detailed space needs program; master plan level cost estimate; and the development of a strategic facilities master plan. The plan outlines phased implementation of recommended improvements, including the creation of a central “Cadet Commons,” a new science and engineering addition to the CETF, and the establishment of new interdisciplinary research lab space in all buildings. RNL also evaluated and assessed potential implementation of future sustainable design features to enhance the energy performance of these individual buildings.