The stately Nemours Mansion and Gardens has earned a new award, to add to its previous three. On November 9, 2016, Robinson Anderson Summers (RAS) Landscape Architects received the Trumbauer Award for Landscape Architecture & Design from the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art (ICAA). [Read more…]
Whether renovation or new construction, it’s the stuff behind the walls and in the ceilings that gives a building life and renders it habitable. The goal of creating comfortable, safe and energy-efficient administrative, academic and student life environments on university and college campuses is a common one. [Read more…]
Constructed in 2001 and located on Independence Mall, the Independence Visitor Center (IVC) welcomes tourists and history buffs alike as they begin their immersion into the city’s storied past.
Over the years the IVC has expanded its resources and volume of displayable information. A recent building analysis by local digital agency Bluecadet sparked a desire for IVC to reinvent itself, with the dual goals of creating a more memorable visitor experience and improving operational functionality.
Reorganization of space and key program elements such as the information desk, ticketing, gift shop, café and restrooms are among the improvements, as are signage and wayfinding devices. The IVC also opted for the installatioin of new media walls and interactive displays to engage visitors and improve circulation throughout the center.
BBA designed the electrical system for the new interactive displays and provided mechanical design for the National Park Service/IVC information center, offices, expanded gift shop and theater. Plumbing and electrical connections were designed for a relocated café, and full services were required for restroom additions. LEED documentation to renew and improve the building’s existing O&M certification was also completed by BBA.
The Visual Culture, Arts and Media (VCAM) project at Haverford College will renovate and adaptively reuse the Old Gym (aka Ryan Gym) to create a flexible learning environment, with aesthetic and maker venues for students, faculty and the public.
Anchored by the Hurford Center for the Arts & Humanities, which will administer its facilities, VCAM will provide classrooms, labs, offices and presentation spaces which will encourage trans-disciplinary creativity in digital media, film, exhibitions, 3D fabrication and material culture. It will also feature a 144-seat multimedia screening and performance room.
Among the project criteria are targeted LEED Gold certification; adaptability to the existing building footprint; hub-centric floor plan; physical and contextual connections with the campus as a whole; and a timeless design which supports VCAM’s program now and in the future with dynamic spaces that inspire visual literacy in students and faculty alike.
In addition to serving as MEP engineer for the design project, BBA also teamed with MSR Design on the pre-design report engagement.
Eastern State Penitentiary is more than 200 years old. It functioned as a state prison until the 1970s and reopened in the 1990s as a museum that focuses on issues in the United States criminal justice system.
In preparation for the three-year exhibition on mass incarceration, “Prisons Today,” BBA renovated a series of inmate workshops which are part of Cellblock 4. Prior to our work, the cellblock had no heat or air conditioning. The new systems were specified and installed in the most unobtrusive manner possible.
The design is also reversible: all mechanical and electrical systems can be removed and the building restored to its original state using demolished material which was carefully labeled and stored.
Light fixtures for the exhibit utilize a high color rendering and high efficiency source for optimal energy conservation. BBA also designed dimmable LED track lighting system for displays to provide sufficient illuminance while maintaining comfortable light levels for the public and staff. Narrow beam LED lamps accent exhibits and wide beam LED lamps provide general lighting.
Designed by Louis Kahn and constructed in 1961, the Richards Medical Research Laboratory is a National Historic Landmark consisting of four towers (A, B, C, and D) in a pinwheel configuration. Driving two separate projects is the fact that Richards has not been comprehensively renovated and is no longer suitable for the wet-bench research for which it was constructed: building systems have served beyond their useful life. Starting with C and D towers, improvements consisted of designing a tenant fitout of the basement, first, second, third, fourth and seventh floors to accommodate four different user groups. Read more about the project here.
School’s out for the summer, but BBA’s co-ops are hard at work. In fact, they’ve been clocking in every day for almost four months at this point and will continue to do so until September 16. [Read more…]
On June 8, the Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia held their 23rd Annual Preservation Achievement Awards. BBA served as the MEP engineer for three projects for that received 2016 Grand Jury Awards, which celebrate the highest level of achievement in historic restoration for the built environment. [Read more…]
Temple Adath Israel consists of a complex of multiple adjoining buildings, built over time. Initial construction occurred in the 1950s including a sanctuary addition designed by Pietro Belluschi and Charles Wise in 1959. Programmatically, the facility encompasses worship, education and administrative space.
Although physical facility failures were addressed as they appeared, in 2014 the synagogue initiated a multi-phased renovation project to create a more welcoming environment for modern worshipers and upgrade building systems for energy efficiency, functionality and code compliance.
BBA designed a sprinkler system for the sanctuary that respected the clean lines of the modernist architecture, integrating the required sprinkler piping seamlessly into the design. Introduction of a prominent new 15-foot diameter chandelier in the sanctuary drove associated electrical improvements. Other services included HVAC upgrades to Adath Israel’s auditorium and kitchen, totaling 4,500 square feet.
Swarthmore College held the grand opening of its newest project, the Inn at Swarthmore, on May 4. In addition to the 40-room Inn—the centerpiece of the project— the Swarthmore Campus + Community Store (formerly the bookstore) and the 115-seat Broad Table Tavern are a draw for students, faculty, staff, parents and local residents alike. As the MEP engineer on Cope Linder Architects’ extensive project team, [Read more…]
According to the Bureau of Labor, in 2015 males made up approximately 90 percent of the professionals working in both the mechanical and electrical engineering fields. While girls and boys excel at math and science classes at the same rate in high school, fewer girls choose to pursue engineering in college. Fewer still elect to work in the field after graduation. BBA has a staff of 24 engineers and designers, six of whom are women, accounting for a quarter of the staff. [Read more…]
BBA is proud to announce the recent hiring of three new employees to our team: Robert Hughes, Victoria Fitzgerald Whitesell, and Peter Domingo. [Read more…]
On May 9 the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the City of Philadelphia held the grand opening of their new Community Health and Literacy Center at Broad and Morris Streets. The Center houses the CHOP pediatric primary care center; a Philadelphia Department of Public Health community health center; the Free Library’s South Philadelphia branch; and the DiSilvestro Playground and Recreation Center. [Read more…]
The restoration of Dey Mansion in Wayne, New Jersey has been recognized by the State of New Jersey with a 2016 New Jersey Historic Preservation Award. Constructed between 1740-50 by Dirk Dey as a private residence, it is an amalgam of Dutch and English influences, a rich and dramatic composition of country and urban elements that had few mid-18th century counterparts west of the Hudson River. [Read more…]
On April 18, two years of work with Murray Associates Architects of Harrisburg culminated in a ribbon cutting ceremony for the Sustainability and Innovation Hub at Montgomery County Community College. New college President Kevin Pollock, Ph.D., is pictured at the podium. He was one of several speakers at the ceremony, which took place on MCCC’s West Campus in Pottstown, Pennsylvania. [Read more…]
On March 28, three Drexel University undergraduate students joined BBA. For the next six months, they will work alongside our team, completing their full-time, on-the-job, cooperative education experiences. John Dionisio, an electrical engineering sophomore, will be assisting the electrical engineering department; Sara Sadoff, a civil and architectural engineering sophomore [Read more…]
UPenn’s Richards Building renovation has been getting press in the Philadelphia Inquirer and AIA Philadelphia’s magazine Context. Designed by Louis Kahn and constructed in 1961, Richards is a National Historic Landmark consisting of four towers in a pinwheel configuration. No longer suitable for the wet-bench research for which it was constructed [Read more…]
BBA has launched our first-ever holiday e-card which can be viewed on YouTube by clicking here. Be sure to turn up the volume on your device, as the card has both audio and visual properties. Enjoy, and happy holidays from all of us to all of you!
September 12 marked the official start-up of One South Broad’s new cooling tower, installed in late June at the former PNB Building by owner Broad One LP. Flipping the switch to “on” was the easy part. The hard part was lifting structural steel, piping and four 7,000-lb. cooling tower sections into position atop the 25-story building at Broad and Chestnut Streets from a staging area near 15th and JFK Boulevard. [Read more…]