On the Scene: Transforming Turner Field; $10M Donation to FIU Engineering
In April, JE Dunn Construction began work transforming Turner Field, former home of the Atlanta Braves baseball team, into an NCAA Division 1 football stadium for Georgia State University. The project’s commencement came roughly five months after the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia approved the sale of the property from the Georgia State University Foundation to GSU. According to the university, the venue will “essentially remain the same in size” and will initially include 23,000 seats, with a planned future phase adding another 10,000 seats. The repurposing will mark the third life of the facility, which was originally constructed as the 85,000-seat Centennial Olympic Stadium for the 1996 Olympic Games. JE Dunn will have roughly four months to complete the project, which includes construction of a new seating bowl, installation of artificial turf and new athletic sports lighting. The project also included demolition of the former Major League Baseball stadium’s bullpen, dugouts and portions of the ballpark’s lower level seating. Contractors also plan to construct new locker rooms and a new broadcast booth. The architect of record is Heery International.
Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based construction manager Moss & Associates recently donated $10 million to Florida International University and its School of Engineering and Computing. Presented at the school’s April 5th Torch Awards Gala by FIU graduate Chad Moss, executive vice president, the donation marks the largest gift to the university by an alumnus, according to the school. Additionally, the donation—funded by the contractor’s charitable foundation—creates the School of Construction, Infrastructure and Sustainability. According to FIU, the donation will create three endowments to help students access higher education, with the school using earnings from the Moss Endowed Chair in Construction Management to recruit a director for the school. Additionally, the contractor’s gift will create scholarships named for FIU grads now working at Moss & Associates: the Sasha Seco Women in Construction Scholarship and the Kevin Love Fostering Success Scholarship. “In many ways the donation was a gift honoring our employees that went to that school, and it heightened the prominence of the School of Construction, Infrastructure and Sustainability,” Moss says. He estimates that roughly 10% of the contractor’s professional workforce are FIU graduates. FIU President Mark B. Rosenberg recognized the contractor’s gift by stating: “This generous and history-making donation will help us educate a new generation of construction professionals who will have an impact on our community and beyond.”