The Eli and Edythe Broad Art Museum
Michigan State University
East Lansing, USA
Images: © AKT II and MSU Webcam
This is a striking piece of architecture in Michigan State University, USA, providing an exhibition space and a place where students can experience the art of curation. Its form reflects the surrounding landscape. The engineers combined the use of self-finished concrete for the significant exposed structural components with steel framing where longer spans were needed to create the wide open spaces.
To define and control the complex geometry and to ensure integration of all the elements of the building, the engineers adopted a BIM model that was accessible to all designers. This was especially helpful in resolving services integration and achieving the final panelised skin of folded steel panels.
A visual tour de force on site – a project that is hard to ignore. It is a good example (though not unique) of how the engineers ability to model and analyse complex forms, and to define the fabrication parameters needed to achieve it, has moved forward in recent years. In this project the engineers and architects achieved something rather special that will make people think about the building and, perhaps think about the engineers that have made it possible.