#48 The Maryland Construction Network

by Rob

in Podcast Episodes

More on the Upcoming UB Law Center Tour

We are joined by Neb Sertsu – Acting MCN Podcast 130x130 BrownVice-President for the University of Baltimore’s Department of Facilities Management and Capital Planning, to discuss the University’s perspective of the John & Frances Angelos Law Center. MCN, AIABaltimore and USGBC Maryland are hosting a tour of the new law center on June 5th.

Over 20 years was spent trying to secure funding to renovate the existing library on the campus of UB. After decades of disappointment President Robert L. Bogomolny headed an initiative to develop a small triangular surface parking lot at the corner of Mt. Royal Ave. and Charles St. $92 million in funding was secured via the General Assembly with and additional $15 million pledged by the University.

Unlike traditional methods for obtaining architectural services and proposals for design, UB was granted the opportunity to conduct an international design competition. President Bogomolny was responsible for the establishment of the design standards that guided those companies participating in the competition. Initial proposals were used to pare the group to 10 contestants. Following interviews, the list was further narrowed to 5 firms. The 5 finalists were granted stipends from the Abel Foundation to refine their designs for a final presentation to a panel of 5 architects from across the United States.

The architectural judges helped the University define and refine their expectations and desires for the new building. Further, they posed questions during the formal presentations of design to help the University in their decision as to the winner of the competition.

Mr. Sertsu describes how wonderful it was to see how the five groups arrived at different but near equal solutions to the challenges posed by this project. He notes that the final decision was very difficult but the focus of sustainability and integration of “non-traditional” materials from the Ayers, Saint Gross / Behnisch Architekten  collaborative submission made the difference. Glass allows natural lighting to be utilized throughout the building. It further transmits the sense of energy and enthusiasm to help students, faculty, and visitors alike become more productive and engaged in the University. The building has quickly become a hub where all the students and faculty gather to meet and spend time in between classes and appointments.

Response to the new building has been overwhelmingly favorable. Admission tours frequently see prospective students taking photos of this “one-of-a-kind” facility. The building has significantly increased “viral marketing” for UB. As a result, the University has experienced a renewed connection with the people of Baltimore and has significantly contributed to the betterment of the local community.

MCN, AIABaltimore and USGBC Maryland are hosting a tour of this facility with networking on June 5th. Any net proceeds from the event will benefit University of Baltimore scholarship programs. For more information on this event, please download the registration flyer or, click here to register online for the event.

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