The University of Colorado Denver has selected internationally acclaimed and locally represented SmithGroup to design a new engineering, design and computing building at a prominent downtown Denver location on the east side of Speer Boulevard. Construction is slated to begin in late 2022 with a planned opening date in time for the 2024-25 academic year.
In addition to housing CU Denver’s College of Engineering, Design and Computing (CEDC) and leveraging computing and technology initiatives campuswide, the building will serve as the anchor of an open innovation district. The project is part of a major goal of CU Denver’s visionary 2030 Strategic Plan to cultivate new technology, partnerships, programming, diverse talent, and in-demand jobs, all in one hub located in the heart of downtown Denver.
Martin Dunn, dean of the College of Engineering, Design and Computing (CEDC), said the building will be a gamechanger for the CEDC and CU Denver by serving students with cutting-edge facilities that support computing and design-oriented curricula and pedagogy.
“This is essential as technology is changing faster than ever and industry is asking engineers to do new types of work that require increased creativity, teamwork, and collaboration across disciplines,” Dunn said. “It will also amplify our research in important areas like artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, and robotics, where emerging technologies are transforming health, construction, manufacturing, cities, and space.”
In addition to SmithGroup’s impressive technical skill and robust project portfolio, including designing the first academic building on the Virginia Tech Innovation Campus and the University of Texas at Dallas Engineering Building, project leaders say SmithGroup’s vision aligns with CU Denver’s values—among them diversity, equity, and innovation.
“Our SmithGroup team could not be more excited to partner with CU Denver on this long-awaited flagship project, said Mecayla Cobb, SmithGroup's Higher Education Studio Leader in Denver and principal in charge of the project. “We look forward to designing a facility that will create a sense of belonging for all, foster innovation and future growth, embed sustainability and display state-of-the-art, hands-on learning for CU Denver and our surrounding community.”
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