Western’s SVPA Building on Schedule, Honored with Design Excellence Award

Recent progress on Western's School of Visual and Performing Arts Center. Photo by Peggy Stewart.


Work is progressing on schedule for the Western Connecticut State University School of Visual and Performing Arts Center on the university’s Westside campus in Danbury. And as the impressive structure takes shape, construction design organizations have taken note.


The Cold-Formed Steel Engineers Institute (CFSEI) announced recently that ClarkDietrich Building Systems, the industry’s leading manufacturer of a full-line of drywall studs and accessories, structural studs and joists, metal lath and accessories, shaft wall studs and track, interior finishing products, and connectors and accessories for commercial and residential construction, was honored for its role in the project with a Design Excellence Award at the 2013 CFSEI Annual Expo and Meeting in San Francisco, Calif. The Design Excellence category recognizes small and large projects that exemplify excellence in the structural design of new or renovated structures utilizing cold-formed steel products.


Photo by Peggy Stewart.

Photo by Peggy Stewart.

According to a ClarkDietrich press release, “The 137,000 square-foot project presented several unique design challenges for the use of cold-formed steel including a 96-foot soaring wall, an interior 40-foot plenum, as well as trapezoidal and triangular windows.”


Accepting the award, Robert Warr, P.E., LEED AP, director of Engineering Services for ClarkDietrich Engineering Services LLC, said, “Our work on this project truly represents the best of ClarkDietrich’s offerings. We would like to extend a special thank you to CONN Acoustics in Newington for trusting us with their design needs. It is only with top-quality contractors like them that we are able to receive this distinguished accolade.”


The Cold-Formed Steel Engineers Institute “comprises hundreds of structural engineers and other design professionals who are finding a better way to produce safe and efficient designs for commercial and residential structures with cold-formed steel,” according to their website. “CFSEI members work together to develop and evolve industry standards and design methods, produce and issue technical bulletins, and provide seminars and online training to improve the knowledge and skills base of engineers and design professionals.”


The eagerly awaited SVPA Center will house the university’s music, theatre and art programs. Western Director of Facilities Planning and Engineering Peter Visentin said the project is about 65 percent complete and is on track for a February 2014 commissioning that will include testing of all mechanical, electrical, plumbing and lighting systems. Visentin said furnishings and equipment are scheduled to be loaded in during spring 2014, with the first classes to be held in the new facility in fall 2014.


For more information, call the Office of University Relations at (203) 837-8486.

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