To accommodate the need to update their facilities, Miami University decided first to make renovations to nearby Hughes Hall so it could act as a “swing space” to house additional research, classes, and activities until the overall project could be completed.
The Hughes Hall renovation consisted of 37,000 square feet of renovated space on the second, third, and fourth floors. With renovated research labs, teaching classrooms, and collaboration space, Hughes Hall now serves the University’s Biology and Science Engineering Department.
Classrooms and labs area clustered in close proximity allow conversations, teaching and experiences to flow smoothly from one to the other. Flexible, modular spaces allow for large and small gatherings fully supported by technology (movable walls feature imbedded TV screens, for example) as well as white boards and other teaching and conversational aids.
One key consideration in the renovation project was the use of utilities during and after the renovation. The creation of lab spaces in areas that had not previously been lab spaces required a careful assessment of the types of research to be conducted in those areas so that the use of electricity, water, and gases could be anticipated.
This challenge was increased by the fixed, low floor-to-floor heights in Hughes Labs. Nonetheless, a design was achieved allowing for use of the research facilities throughout the construction process.