In Miami, another topping out for Florida International University

A new landmark on the Florida International University campus

Skanska’s South Florida office recently topped out its third project for repeat client Florida International University in Miami. This milestone on the Academic Health Center 5 project represents another achievement in close to a decade’s worth of successful projects with the university.

Originally awarded in 2009, our project team partnered with the university and designer Perkins + Will to develop a landmark building within a very tight project budget (Skanska’s contract is $32 million).

“It will be the most beautiful building on campus,” said Jessie Reyes, USA Building project manager and a FIU alum. “I’m pretty sure that when this is done it will be on the cover of architectural publications.”

The building’s exterior is a combination of architectural precast panels and curtain wall systems of all shapes and sizes – these will enclose the unique shape of the building.

“There’s not a plumb wall on the job,” Reyes said. “There are all sorts of angles and radiuses, and a very complicated curtain wall.”

Extensive cantilevering is a key design component – and a major construction challenge. The main conference rooms are stacked on top of each other on three floors within a structural box that cantilevers out 35 feet, from the third floor up to the fifth floor.

Other innovative aspects to the job include a highly efficient chilled beam HVAC system with an advanced Taco chilled water recirculating system. These will help achieve the energy savings needed for the building to achieve LEED Gold certification.

The Academic Health Center 5, which is scheduled for completion in March 2014, is our third building on the FIU campus, following our successful Frost Art Museum and the College of Nursing and Health Sciences Building projects.

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  1. For those wondering what it will look like after completion, the renderings are found here: http://facilities.fiu.edu/FacilitiesNewWeb/BT877_Details.html

    As an FIU alum, I’m excited to see we’re building more there.

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