University News

Construction to commence on applied math building

Completion scheduled for next December to make way for new engineering complex

Senior Staff Writer
Tuesday, October 28, 2014

The new applied math building is currently in the “design build” phase of the construction process. Foundation work will begin next month.

After the Corporation approved construction on a new applied math building, designs are being finalized and foundation work is kicking into full swing over the next few weeks.

The Corporation’s Committee on Budget and Finance gave the go-ahead at its meeting this month for construction to begin. The structure will be built in the parking lot next to Barus and Holley — close to the current home of the Division of Applied Math at 182 George St. Construction is set to begin next month and finish December 2015, The Herald previously reported.

Architectural Research Office, the architecture firm responsible for the Friedman Study Center and the Institute for Computational and Experimental Research in Mathematics, will design the building, while landscape architecture firm Gustafson Guthrie Nichol will map out the placement of the new structure and ensure the landscape design of the site “match(es) with the design of the University campus,” said Stephen Maiorisi, vice president for Facilities Management.

The new building is currently undergoing a “design build” process that allows construction to start before the design is complete, Maiorisi said. Foundation work is set to start within the next month, while the building’s exterior and interior designs are still being finished and will then await the Corporation’s approval.

“The driver was the engineering building,” Maiorisi said of the new applied math construction.

At the moment, some of the department’s faculty members and graduate students are located in two historic houses that must be torn down to clear space for the new engineering building, Maiorisi said. Construction on the new engineering complex will begin once the faculty members and students settle into their spaces in the new applied math building.

Collaboration between University administrative teams involved in the building plans and the Division of Applied Math has been key to the efficiency of the designing and planning process, Maiorisi said. “We work very closely with the faculty to make sure that whatever is being proposed is something that’s going to enhance their program.”

Hongjie Dong, associate professor of applied math and head of the undergraduate program, said the new building will offer more benefits for the graduate program than for the undergraduate program.

“I think for graduate students, they will definitely benefit from the new building because it will be a much more renovated building,” Dong said. “They will probably get more space for their offices, and the common room will be a bit larger than the current one.”

Though the new applied math facility will have a modern aesthetic, its design will contrast with that of the engineering building, Maiorisi said. The scale of the buildings are very different — the applied math building is planned to be 13,000 square feet and the engineering building over 90,000 square feet — so the designs must take this into consideration, he added.

The applied math building’s design must also be more sensitive to the surrounding neighborhood than that of the engineering building, Maiorisi said, given its proximity to neighboring homes. “While they both may end up looking like modern buildings, they both need to accomplish different things in terms of where they are.”


  1. Robert Petrocelli says:

    I may be out of touch here: but is 182 George being torn down!

    • TheRationale says:


    • CheckTheRenderings says:

      As you can see in the corner of the renderings, 182 George is not being torn down. This is going on what’s now the Barus & Holley parking lot.

    • “At the moment, some of the department’s faculty members and graduate students are located in two historic houses that must be torn down to clear space for the new engineering building, Maiorisi said.” Which buildings is he referring to?

  2. Stating “the buildings must be torn down” is a lie. Declarative language doesn’t make falsehood any more truthful. And no thanks on the same architecture firm as the Friedman Study Center. One’s enough.

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