This week, PC was notified that the University of Vermont STEM Complex project in Burlington, Vermont, was named the winner of the 2020 ENR New England Best Projects Award in the Best Higher Education/Research category. This is the second high-profile award PC has received this year for the UVM project; we were also honored with a national Build America Award from the Associated General Contractors (AGC) in March.
I am very proud to have been part of this construction project as a senior project engineer for four years, especially as a University of Vermont (UVM) graduate! The first phase of the $80 million project included the construction of the 120,000-square-foot Discovery Hall housing 34 teaching and research labs. During this phase, I focused on MEP system coordination and installation, an exciting and challenging scope given the diverse laboratory floorplans and systems that were built.
Next, the Cook Physical Science Building (165,000-square-feet) was demolished just 30 feet away from Discovery Hall to make room for the second phase of new construction. Innovation Hall, a 75,000-square-foot building, with modern lecture halls, classrooms and offices was completed for Fall semester 2019. During this phase, I was closely involved in structural, architectural and MEP installations. This phase required extensive mock-ups and inspections to deliver a high-quality environment featuring modern audio-visual, furniture, casework and other systems working together.
The facility was constructed on a tight site in UVM’s Central Campus with multiple connections from new construction to occupied buildings. Extensive planning and coordination was required with the University and our trade partners for success. Another aspect we focused on was continuous collaboration with the design team (Freeman French Freeman, Ellenzweig, BR+A), owner and trade partners using PC’s virtual construction / BIM process to ensure all details were prepared and detailed for construction.
This was tremendous project that allowed me to learn and grow so much, and I am excited the new STEM complex will provide similar learning experiences for generations to come!