As part of its 2010 Master Plan Update, Metropolitan Community College (MCC) began to strategically create centers of specialization at various MCC locations in order to reduce facility redundancy and improve the effectiveness of its delivery of education to the community. The Master Plan Update called for three separate buildings and integrated landscape on the historic Fort Omaha Campus in Omaha, Nebraska.
A new building at the Metropolitan Community College (MCC) in Omaha has become a versatile research, development, and training resource for students and industry. Designed by BNIM Architects, the 65,000-square-foot Center for Advanced and Emerging Technology (CAET) includes a virtual-reality lab, 3-D printing, laser cutters, plasma-cutting technology, and a high-bay space for such endeavors as prototyping new equipment.
The contemporary steel structure, clad with white precast-concrete panels on the east and west, opens onto a two-story high-bay volume called Innovation Central with glazed Schweiss bifold liftstrap garage doors.
”The architect had Schweiss listed as one of the approved door manufacturers for this project. I had a good relationship with Schweiss in the past so I decided to go with your quote. We hired a rep from Schweiss Doors to come down and help us. Everybody at the college was impressed at how the doors turned out. I remember the architects and designers specifying that they thought it was going to really be a unique and cool component to the building.”
- Mike Krayneski, Project Mgr.
Overhead Door Company of Omaha™
An integral part of this building was the incorporation of two Schweiss bifold doors. The larger 18.4' wide x 26.5' tall designer door was clad in glass. The smaller 15.6' wide x 18.3' tall door was clad with fiber cement panels. Both doors were powder coated and have electric photo eye sensors, door base safety edges, warning lights and horns, gray liftstraps and have an emergency back-up system in case of a power outage.
According to Project Manager Mike Krayneski of Overhead Door Company of Omaha, who was in charge of installing the doors, the main purpose for the larger door, in addition to tying into the aesthetic look of the CAET, is used to bring in large equipment. The smaller door, located about 30 feet to the side of the other is for a transitional room that houses a lot of utility components and gives access to other classrooms in the area. It has the same material overlaid on it to match that part of the building.
Krayneski said his company has used Schweiss Doors in the past.
"The architect had Schweiss listed as one of the approved door manufacturers for this project. I had a good relationship with Schweiss in the past so I decided to go with your quote," said Krayneski. "We hired a rep from Schweiss Doors to come down and help us. Everybody at the college was impressed at how the doors turned out. I remember the architects and designers specifying that they thought it was going to really be a unique and cool component to the building."
Krayneski also noted that Brent at Schweiss Doors was there for support and helped out a lot and that everything came with the load and the directions were easy to follow and the doors are still working perfectly.
Glass curtain walls provide views and daylight that reaches into interior training rooms, while a perforated metal screen on the building's south elevation manages solar gain. The architects redeveloped an existing urban site for the project where they improved storm water management for the area. They also created pedestrian and public transportation connections to the neighborhood.
Looking from the inside out you can see how the glass bifold door matches the rest of the building. The bifold door is used to bring in large equipment. The smaller door is located about 30 feet to the side of the large bifold door and opens to a transitional room that houses a lot of utility components and gives access to other classrooms in the area.
Holland Basham Architects served as the Executive Architect for the project and was responsible for the design of the Academic Success Center, BCDM Architects was responsible for the design of the Construction Education Center, and BNIM was responsible for the design of the Center for Advanced and Emerging Technology (CAET), with all three firms coordinating work throughout the design and construction phases. BNIM also served as the LEED administrator for all buildings as part of the project. A different architect was used intentionally for each of the three buildings on the college campus in order to make each building look different.
The goal of the CAET was to provide the tools and space for developing innovative academic programming targeting industry-specific emerging technologies. The CAET building encourages the "making of things," where prototyping, design, and production can spur innovation and entrepreneurship - filling a niche for a maker space that does not yet exist in the region. The transformative instructional design employs new work-embedded methodologies for more effective and efficient training. BNIM's design concept also provides flexible and adaptable space, collaborative project rooms, conference areas, and soft space for chance interaction between students, faculty, and industry professionals.
The building design holistically incorporated recycled content materials, diverted waste from the landfill, and created a highly productive and energy efficient interior environment through integrated water, HVAC, and lighting systems. CAET was optimized for daylighting and lighting controls and received a LEED Gold Certification.
BCDM Architects partnered with Holland Basham Architects and BNIM to create the new $20.4 million construction education campus for Metropolitan Community College's Fort Omaha Campus. Of the three new projects, BCDM designed the Construction Education Center; a building that brings together all construction-related programs under one roof. Previously, the programs were spread between two other campuses. These programs include Architectural Design, Civil Engineering, Construction Technology, Plumbing, and HVAC.
This new cutting-edge facility serves as a learning tool as it displays building systems in a way that provides students with a unique, firsthand perspective of the trades they are pursuing. Plumbing chases in the walls, electrical power and distribution, and ceiling HVAC systems are all cleverly exposed with glass and showcased with graphics to describe the system assemblies. Multiple spaces with tables are located throughout the building for students to do homework, work on group projects, and to collaborate with students from other programs.
All labs are visually open and featured from the corridor, placing education on display. The largest lab, the Capstone Lab, located at the center of the building, is 4,700 square feet in size and two stories tall. The two-story tall Capstone Lab utilizes a catwalk for students and visitors to safely observe and learn from projects being constructed.
The LEED Gold building allows the school to grow and adapt to suit the spatial and technological needs of future students and business partners. Since CAET opened in 2017, corporate training at MCC is up more than 300 percent, generating income for the school and employment opportunities for students. The building now serves as a national training center for EPI-USA, a California-based data-center-training organization.
The smaller 15.6' wide x 18.3' tall Schweiss bifold door was clad with fiber cement panels. Both doors were powder coated and have electric photo eye sensors, door base safety edges, warning lights and horns, gray liftstraps and have an emergency back-up system in case of a power outage.
BNIM (Berkebile Nelson Immenschuh McDowell, Inc.) is an architecture and design firm founded in 1970 in Kansas City, Missouri.
At BNIM they have a saying: "No one knows as much as everyone." At their core, they are ONE BNIM, united by their common values and their belief that individual ideas are improved upon by their designers and collaborators to form a continual and collective cycle of innovation.
BNIM is a collaboration of architectural, design and planning professionals who leverage a collective capacity for design thinking to solve local and global issues related to design and community.
The firm's practice areas include sustainable design and community redevelopment; urban planning and design; educational facilities; campus master planning; civic, state and federal government work; residential; and corporate office spaces. BNIM's multifaceted design excellence, which combines human experience with aesthetics and building performance, has yielded national acclaim, including the AIA National Architecture Firm Award, and consistent design recognition nationally and internationally. In December 2010 the American Institute of Architects announced that BNIM was awarded the American Institute of Architects Architecture Firm Award for advancing the design of sustainable architecture over the past three decades.
BNIM's notable sustainable projects include the Iowa Utilities Board – Office of Consumer Advocate Office Building in Des Moines, the Omega Center for Sustainable Living at the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies in Rhinebeck, New York (Living Building and LEED Platinum), the School of Nursing and Student Community Center at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (LEED Gold), and the Lewis and Clark State Office Building in Jefferson City, Missouri (LEED Platinum).
The practice works collectively from offices in Kansas City, Missouri. San Diego, California and Des Moines, Iowa. Their headquarters location is at 2460 Pershing Road, Suite 100, Kansas City. Phone 816-783-1500. Their Des Moines location is at 317 6th Ave., Suite 100. Phone 515-974-6462 and in San Diego they are at 797 J Street. Phone 619-795-9920. www.bnim.com
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This main corridor bifold door is located at the social hub of one of three buildings that were part of a 65,000-square-foot master plan update on the historic Fort Omaha Campus. (Photos courtesy of Overhead Door Co. of Omaha)