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Virginia Commonwealth University

STEM Building

The STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math) Teaching Laboratory Building at VCU is characterized by an intensive core grouping of undergraduate science teaching laboratories for Chemistry, Biology, and Physics, student study space, innovative spaces for Mathematics and Applied Mathematics instruction, interactive spaces for Psychology and exhibit spaces for Anthropology. The program yields approximately 64,000 SF and fills five floors on the dense, urban site. Goals of the new design include integrated learning which emphasizes “connections” between disciplines and departments as well as enhancing flexibility to vary scales of learning. It also creates an energetic environment of openness and transparency to foster collaboration and enhance student achievement.

This large, contemporary science building will be constructed on the site of the exiting Franklin Street Gym. It will be designed to sensitively complement the historic context of Franklin Street, which includes the adjacent 14 story Johnson Hall as well as three, four story historic town homes.

This project is imagined to be a “Centerpiece for the Monroe Park Campus” as it will be the center for the College of Humanities and Sciences. It will give the College breathing room in its laboratory utilization while also creating a 21st century learning environment that will serve the majority of undergraduate students on campus. The College is the university’s launching pad for students aspiring to enroll in graduate health sciences programs. This building will provide VCU with the facilities that it needs to attract, retain, and educate tomorrow’s science, math, and health care leaders.

BCWH teamed with Ballinger, a nationally-recognized expert in the planning of science facilities, to prepare a Programming and Conceptual Design Study for the new STEM Teaching Laboratory Building and adjacent home for the College. The team will be starting design in 2017.