Omni Dallas Hotel

Dallas, Texas


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The Omni Dallas Hotel is a 23-story, 1,001-room hotel located adjacent to the Dallas Convention Center. It includes 1.2 million square feet of guest rooms, convention space, meeting rooms, restaurants, a spa, a fitness area, and other public areas as well as back-of-house areas for hotel employees. Its location is intended to activate Lamar Street and to spur connections between existing districts of Downtown Dallas. The new development has made this area of downtown friendlier to pedestrians during the day as well as safer for pedestrians at night. As the area continues to develop, it is also likely that more residents will move downtown, bringing even more business to the area.

5G Studio Collaborative integrated a number of sustainable design strategies into the architectural design of the hotel in order to contribute meaningfully in the areas of energy conservation, water conservation, responsible material use, and occupant comfort and well-being. The hotel has achieved LEED Gold certification through the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) under the USGBC's LEED for New Construction Rating System.


The location for the Omni Dallas Convention Center Hotel is a highly sustainable one – it is located within half a mile of two light rail DART stations and was a brownfield previous to pre-construction remediation. The hotel is intentionally set back a short distance away from Lamar Street in order to make the scale of the built environment more comfortable for pedestrians.

Previously used as an open-surface asphalt parking area and parking garage, the site has been transformed into a pedestrian-friendly environment. The heat island effect of the site was significantly reduced by the construction of the hotel development, which includes a large area of open green space, site hardscape with high Solar Reflectance Index (SRI) values, and roofing materials with high SRI values. The hotel parking garage includes preferred parking spaces for low-emitting and fuel-efficient vehicles, and bicycle racks are located at the main entrance. An underground cistern captures recycled condensate water for use in irrigating the landscaped areas in lieu of using potable city water. The northwest corner of the property features a rain garden, which minimizes stormwater run-off from the site.


Energy and Water

The glazing at the podium, the lower four levels of the hotel, primarily faces north and east in order to avoid afternoon solar heat gain into the building's public spaces. The tower, which is composed of the upper nineteen floors of the hotel, has high performance glazing which was specified with a low solar heat gain coefficient (SHGC) of 0.18 in order to reduce the energy consumption which results from solar heat gain during the majority of the year in Texas. In order to minimize its impact on neighboring sites and buildings, the tower's glazing also has very low exterior reflectance values. The hotel has efficient mechanical and lighting systems, and an energy management system reduces energy consumption in the guestrooms through key card switches that control the lighting and HVAC in the guestrooms when they are unoccupied. All faucets have low-flow aerators, all toilets are low-flow fixtures, and the guestrooms have low-flow showerheads. The hotel's low-flow fixtures were calculated to provide water savings of over 30% as compared to a baseline of standard plumbing fixtures.


(Rain garden at the northwest corner of the property)

The Design Process

The diagram of the building was developed from the team's desire to activate Lamar Street and create a seamless, integrated interaction between the guest and the passersby. The building footprint is in the shape of a boomerang, creating a dynamic form for the building that conveys movement. The lower four levels of the hotel make up the podium of the building, which is highly transparent on the facades that face north and east. It is clad mostly in white stone along the south and west facades; this is beneficial for the building's energy efficiency since solar heat gain causes the most harm in warmer months for west-facing facades. Much of the east-facing podium glazing is in shade, which further reduces solar heat gain. The upper nineteen levels make up the tower, which contains the hotel's 1,001 guest rooms. In the initial design scheme for the tower, the majority of the tower's glazing was along the north and east-facing facades. Exterior shading elements for the tower were cost-prohibitive to the project, so glazing was more limited for the south and west facades of the tower. Numerous design studies analyzed the angles of the sun in order to minimize harmful solar heat gain without compromising the views and daylighting for south and west-facing guest rooms.

The first project team meeting to discuss the LEED process was held in October of 2008. 5G Studio created the initial LEED credit and responsibility matrix for the team and updated it as needed up until an independent LEED consultant was brought on board in September of 2009. During the schematic and design development stages, 5G extensively researched the plausibility of incorporating sustainable design strategies and pursuing LEED credits listed as 'likely' or 'maybe' in the LEED credit matrix. 5G performed a number of calculations including density and occupancy calculations as they pertain to all credits, bicycle rack/changing room calculations, rainwater harvesting design study calculations, water use reduction calculations, daylighting calculations, and initial views diagrams and calculations.


(5G's LEED credit responsibility and action matrix)

Water efficiency was an important design consideration for the hotel. The landscape architect, TBG Partners, designed a landscape plan that is made up primarily of native and adapted vegetation in order to minimize the irrigation demand. Early in the design process, 5G investigated the possibility of incorporating freestanding cisterns into the design. 5G created a cistern calculator that compared design scenarios; these design scenarios had varying areas of roof area for rainwater harvesting, and a couple of the scenarios included the option of also collecting condensate in the cisterns. Using these values as well as irrigation demand values from TBG, the cistern calculator predicted the end-of-month storage for each month of the year in a typical year. This calculator allowed 5G to predict the ideal cistern capacity for each design scenario and then provide ample space for the cisterns using the most cost efficient scenario. Later on in the design process, the site plan was changed and the entire cistern capacity was moved to the basement since the new site plan could not accommodate the freestanding cisterns.


(One scenario for 5G’s cistern calculations)

For the water use reduction calculations, 5G compared a number of scenarios using different combinations of efficient plumbing fixtures. The calculations use occupancy values derived from preliminary occupancy calculations created by 5G as well as formulas from the LEED Reference Guide. The team had not yet decided whether to pursue one or two points for the LEED water use reduction credit, so the calculations investigated the most cost efficient scenarios for both water use reduction goals. The calculations allowed the project team to know that it was possible to achieve two points in a cost effective manner, and they determined which plumbing fixture selections would be necessary in order to meet the chosen water use reduction goal. The team decided that the hotel would include low-flow faucets, low-flow toilets and urinals, and low-flow showerheads. Through calculations, these fixture selections were predicted to save over 30% water as compared to a conventional combination of plumbing fixtures.


The team's goal was to achieve an ideal level of daylighting for over 75% of the building's regularly occupied areas and views to the outdoors for over 90% of regularly occupied areas. The definition of regularly occupied areas per the LEED Reference Guide includes most areas that are not designated for circulation or storage. The building's high percentage of glazing allows a higher level of daylighting than the minimum recommended by LEED standards for the majority of spaces. The selection of glass was difficult since glass types with a higher transmission of light for daylighting also have a higher solar heat gain coefficient that would negatively impact the overall energy efficiency of the building. 5G investigated numerous design scenarios for their daylighting calculations and coordinated with the mechanical engineer, Blum, to determine how the solar heat gain coefficients of various glass types would affect the energy model.

During the design development stage, the design of the tower changed to an all curtain wall scheme. This scheme maximizes views and daylighting, but a new glass type would need to be selected in order to minimize solar heat gain. 5G researched and compared samples for a variety of glass types and finally settled on an attractive rich blue glass that has a relatively high visible transmittance and as compared to its low solar heat gain coefficient of 0.18, an aesthetically attractive clarity, and a very low exterior reflectance of 6% visible light reflectance and 7% total solar energy reflectance.


(A view of the tower (levels 5-23) from the pool deck)

Materials and Construction

Balfour/Russell/Pegasus implemented a construction waste management program during construction which managed the recycling and salvaging of over 75% of the construction and demolition debris. Materials and products with high recycled and regional content were carefully specified to limit the use of virgin materials and for reduced embodied energy. In order to contribute to a healthier indoor air quality, materials were also specified to be low-emitting. A comprehensive indoor air quality management plan limited the exposure of construction workers to unhealthy contaminants during construction, and it reduced the presence of unhealthy contaminants post-occupancy. Strategically-located glazing, which is composed of glass types that were specified for their high light to solar gain (LSG) ratios, allows building occupants to enjoy high levels of quality natural daylighting and outdoor views.

Professional Services Provided:

(click links below to find out more)

- Architecture | Interiors
- Sustainability (LEED GOLD CERTIFIED)
- Srategic Branding


Size: 1.1 Million SF
Rooms: 1,001
Budget: $389M
Opening: November 11, 2011



Design Architect: 5G Studio Collaborative
Architect of Record: BOKA Powell
Interior Design: Walldrop Nichols
Structural: Brockette Davis Drake
MEP: Blum Consulting Engineers
Civil: URS Corp
Landscape: TBG Partners
Contractor: Balfour/Russell/Pegasus (BRP), a Joint Venture

Omni Dallas Hotel - Awards

  • 2012 Distinguished Building Awards - TEXO Construction Association (Design-Build over $30M)
  • 2012 Distinguished Building Awards - TEXO Construction Association (Electrical over $10M)
  • 2012 Distinguished Building Awards - TEXO Construction Association (Mechanical over $10M)
  • 2012 Distinguished Building Awards - TEXO construction Association (Exteriors all contract amounts)
  • 2012 Vision Award - TEXO Construction Association
  • 2012 Texas Spice designated as a Two-Star Certified Green Restaurant® - Green Restaurant Association (GRA)
  • 2012 Pillars Award Project of the Year - Regional Hispanic Contractors Association
  • 2011 Lodging Hospitality magazine - Readers Choice Award
  • 2011 Outstanding Project Team Over $50M and Over $100M - American Subcontractors Association/ North Texas
  • 2010 ASA - Outstanding project over $100M
  • 2010 Best Public/Private Partnership/Dallas Business Journal
  • 2010 Vision Award American Subcontractors Association/North Texas
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