Archinect

design/buildLAB

Virginia Tech School of Architecture + Design

  • Open House This Friday

    The design/buildLAB would like to invite you to its annual Open House on Friday, April 25 from 10am-4pm! All are welcome for a BBQ and presentation of the Fieldhouse Project at our prefabrication facility (ESL, 4076 Prices Fork Rd, Blacksburg). Hope to see you there!


  • Public Design Unveiling

    It has been a busy week for our studio! As prefab powers on, we have completed the ceiling on all of the roof panels and are ready to apply the final layer of sheathing and the roof membrane!"Steel Team 6" began prefabrication of the screen and steel bents. Last year's student design team even...


  • Prefab Week 1

    This past week we started prefab out at ESL! It was refreshing to say goodbye to our computers and get our hands a little dirty! (Some people really needed it...) ESL was one beautifully organized circus. With no time to waste, we split up into teams so that we could simultaneously produce...


  • Prefab Week 1

    This past week we started prefab out at ESL! It was refreshing to say goodbye to our computers and get our hands a little dirty! (Some people really needed it...) ESL was one beautifully organized circus. With no time to waste, we split up into teams so that we could simultaneously produce...


  • Presentation of a Single Fieldhouse

    This past Friday, we invited the Clifton Forge Little League Board to Virginia Tech for a presentation of the single design of the fieldhouse and master plan we have been working on as a studio! The presentation covered all of the considerations that have gone into the design of the site and...


  • Presentations to Ronald Rael and Board Members

    Last week was a busy one, as we had two different presentations at the end of the week.  On Thursday, we had the opportunity to present the three schemes that we created by merging the best ideas from our previous eight proposals to visiting architect Ronald Rael. Ronald Rael is a professor...


  • Presentations to Ronald Rael and Board Members

    Last week was a busy one, as we had two different presentations at the end of the week.  On Thursday, we had the opportunity to present the three schemes that we created by merging the best ideas from our previous eight proposals to visiting architect Ronald Rael. Ronald Rael is a professor...


  • Community Design Presentation 2

    This past Friday, we hosted the second community design presentation of the fieldhouse to be built for the Clifton Forge Little League this spring. There we presented eight different schemes for the layout of the master plan of the site, as well as architectural designs of the fieldhouse.Community...


  • Community Design Presentation


  • Preliminary Design Presentation

    The design/buildLAB hosted the first design presentation of the fieldhouse this past week for the board members of the Clifton Forge Little League. Each student presented a design of the filedhouse and master plan of the site. The board members offered feedback as to what design aspects they...


  • The Project

    Clifton Forge Little League Field House September 2013 The Virginia Tech design/buildLAB and the Clifton Forge Little League are pleased to announce that they will be partnering on the design and construction of a new field house, including concessions and restrooms, during the 2013/2014 academic...


  • Hello World!

    We are the 2013-2014 design/buildLAB of Virginia Tech! We come together from across the world united in the same passion for design, architecture, and education. This year we will continue the design/buildLAB's tradition of conceiving and realizing a built architecture project that is both...


  • Come Join Us!

    Join us on Wednesday, June 12 at 6:30 PM to celebrate the completion of our bridge project! There will be people to meet, speeches to hear, and a beautiful bridge to admire!


  • The Magic of Sod

    As we near the end of this project, we've all been putting in hours and hours of work to make sure it gets done. Everyone has been commuting to Clifton Forge from Blacksburg every day, some even leaving after their summer school classes to go work on the bridge. We had hoped to finish the bridge...


  • Crane Day

    Months of designing, planning, and construction came together today as we craned the bridge into place. It took us all day, but each piece of the bridge has been placed and bolted! The old bridge was removed yesterday and carted away to its new home today, making room for the ramp to be...


  • Installation

    The hub made it safely to Clifton Forge this afternoon, and was moved to its final resting place on the site. Everything lined up almost perfectly, and with a few taps from the sledgehammer, the entire piece fell into place. After it was bolted into place, we checked to see how level it was. The...


  • Testing and Loading

    We've met with one of the professors in the college of Architecture, Mehdi Setareh, many times over the course of this project to help design our bridge. Yesterday, he came out to ESL to test the deflection of the bridge piece.  He had Stephen run across the bridge for one test, then had...


  • Hard Work Pays Off

    Everyone has been working diligently to get the bridge pieces ready to ship to Clifton Forge on June 3rd. So far this week, we've accomplished a great deal of work! There's still a lot left to do, but with the deadline in sight, we're all doing everything we can to make sure we meet it. The...


  • Pouring Concrete

    We've gotten a lot done this week- the Blacksburg Crew has been hard at work welding, decking, and painting, while the Clifton Forge Commuters have finished setting up the concrete formwork. This week, we were able to pour the concrete foundations for the bridge!


  • Formwork

    Members of the studio went to Clifton Forge to survey the site and install concrete formwork for the foundations of the bridge. While Marie used the backhoe to dig holes for the formwork, the students used surveying equipment to measure the proper depth for each piece. While some students dug...


  • The Design

    You've seen the pieces of our bridge over the past few weeks- all the steel, wood, and welding that is going into making this design a reality. Very soon, all of the pieces will be ready for assembly and the design will become a reality. The Smith Creek Pedestrian Bridge is more than just a...


  • Trust in the Truss

    After many days of squaring, leveling, and welding, the trusses are complete on both the bridge and the ramp! We've now moved on to welding the guardrail posts to the I-beams, and fabricating the wood guardrails. We've been using our new dado blade for the table saw to route out notches for the...


  • Public Presentation of our Pedestrian Bridge Design

    On Friday, half of the studio went to Clifton Forge to present our bridge design to the community. The audience participated with questions and comments, and a number of people volunteered to help with the landscaping portion of the project. The presentation was very well received! Facing a...


  • A Week of Steel

    Our bridge finally became a tangible reality this week with the delivery of our steel. On Monday, all of our barstock, columns, C-channels, and angles arrived at studio. We set to work cutting everything to size. On Wednesday, our steel I-beams arrived at ESL. We were all so excited to finally...


  • Join us for the Unveiling for the Smith Creek Pedestrian Bridge!!

    Join us on Friday, May 3 for the public unveiling of our design for the Smith Creek Pedestrian Bridge! We will be at the Masonic Amphitheater at 5:00 PM in Clifton Forge, VA, to present our work and answer questions.


  • Concrete Coring and Testing

    In order to use the existing concrete retaining wall as a structural foundation for our bridge, we needed to make sure that it was strong enough to withstand the forces exerted by the bridge. Four of us went to Clifton Forge on Friday to take samples of the concrete retaining wall at the...


  • Intro to Welding

    In preparation for the construction of our bridge, six of us went out to ESL on Thursday for an introduction to welding. Only Anna has welding experience, but we couldn't expect her to weld the entire bridge by herself, so all of us will be learning the basics of mig welding. Steve Bickley was...


  • Red Lining

    This morning, Keith and Marie met us in studio at 10:30 to begin red lining our drawings. We talked about everything that needs to get done by Friday in order to make this bridge a reality. So, we're working very hard right now to fix all of the errors in our drawings and make everything perfect...


  • Getting the Ball Rolling

    Today, we met with two representatives from United Rentals to begin talking about the kind of tools we'll need on the job site. The plan is to build our bridge in three sections in Blacksburg, transport them to Clifton Forge, and then crane them into place. In order to make this happen, we'll...


  • Presentation

    Last week, Keith and Marie left us unattended while they attended a conference in San Francisco. We were given instructions to work on our bridge. We all worked very hard (and struggled at times!) but finally designed our bridge for the Amphitheatre site. When Keith and Marie returned, we showed...


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About this Blog

The Virginia Tech design/buildLAB is a Project Based Experiential Learning program focused on the research, development and implementation of innovative construction methods and architectural designs. Students collaborate with local communities and industry experts to conceive and realize built architecture projects that are both educational and charitable in nature. The blog is run by design/buildLAB students who are designing and building a fieldhouse for the Clifton Forge Little League.

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