SHW Detroit designs first U.S. university in Dubai

August 11, 2010

     
   
  Michigan State University will be the first American university to have a presence in Dubai International Academic City (DIAC), a planned 25 million-sf academic campus that will house up to 20 research institutions.  
     





















































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HW Group's Michigan Studio in Detroit has been selected to design and engineer a new 32,000-sf education facility for Michigan State University in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, making MSU the first American university to have a presence in the Dubai International Academic City (DIAC).



















































The DIAC is a planned 25 million-sf academic campus that will house up to 20 research institutions. Murdoch University of Australia and Pune University in Mumbai, India, have already signed on to the project. MSU, located in East Lansing, Mich., is in the top 10 for both study abroad participation and international student enrollment among U.S. public universities, according to Open Doors 2007, an annual report on international education released by the Institute of International Education. During the 2005-06 academic year, the most recent year for which data is available, 2,558 MSU students studied abroad, second only to New York University among all U.S. colleges and universities.

The MSU project will include the school's Construction Management, Family and Community Services, Communication Arts, and Computer Engineering programs. SHW designers are taking three floors of shell space in a new building through programming, conceptual design, schematic design, and design development, which includes mechanical, electrical, and architectural development.

     
   
  MSU's 32,000-sf education facility will occupy three floors of shell space in a new building.  
     

“MSU had a real desire to be a part of this project because its study abroad program is so recognized,” said Chris Mackey, SHW Group's project executive for the Dubai MSU campus. “For the design of it we wanted to engage different students from different backgrounds without being specific to any one culture.”



SHW created a set of design drawings and a 3D Revit model for the Dubai campus. The project is currently being bid out to interior design-build contractors in Dubai. The two-story project is scheduled to be completed by August, in time for fall classes.

“Much of the project is fluid,” said Mackey. “It has a multifunction central communal space with classrooms and offices flowing around it on both floors. Many students there will be commuters so it needed a space with a café, library, and other gathering options that can come from that central area. East Lansing is nothing like Dubai, so the design is very forward-looking and not a very traditional form of architectural expression.”

         
 

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