Matthew and Carolyn Bucksbaum Campus
November-December 2015 Update


Steel has been flying, literal tons of concrete have been poured, and roof, floor, mechanical, and electrical work are in progress here at the beginning of 2016 on the Matthew and Carolyn Bucksbaum Campus. The building are rising fast!

After demolition and digging in the fall came construction in the winter–along with snow.

But back to where we left off: By the end of October, the water service lines had been installed and pressure tested, and most other utility work was completed for the Cafeteria/AMFS Administration Building and Upper Studio Building. Sub grade and foundation work continued in the excavated areas, including the installation of enormous ducts underneath Hurst Hall (for silent air movement while heating and cooling the building).

With November came a snow day–and what was good news in childhood can pose some challenges on the construction site. For example, concrete needs seven days above 40-degree temperatures to cure properly; fortunately the experienced team at Shaw knows how to tent and heat the slabs when necessary, and work continued apace. 

When the team opened up the walls, floors, and ceilings in the 100-plus-year-old Hardy Administration Building (a building constructed and used by the Newman Silver Mine in the late 1800s), its structure showed a need for modern enhancements. Workers added temporary beams and straps to shore it up, and then went to work adding additional roof framing, interior structure, and foundation.

Another task involving the site's historic structures was reapplying, in its original orientation, the old stone work from the AMFS Business Office (home of the foreman of the silver mine in the late 1800s). Stones were numbered as they were removed from the building during demolition so they could be reapplied in their exact original order, and the week before Thanksgiving, the stonework neared completion.

Another milestone was met toward the end of November when Shaw poured the concrete floor slab for the 7,390-square-foot Hurst Hall. Pouring the slab was quite a sight, as the roughly 140 cubic yards of concrete was poured and finished inside a temporary tent structure.

Early December brought cranes to Campus for the beginning of steel framing work and the beginning of the significant visual transformation of the site. In just over a week, the steel work on Hurst Hall was completed and workers started work on roofing. Steel climbed high and fast also for the Administration Building/Cafeteria and Upper Studio Building.

With such a tight construction schedule, the team worked through the holiday weeks, even on New Year's Eve and Day, making significant progress. Now, as we begin in to 2016, most framing is done, roofs are in progress, mechanical, plumbing, and electrical rough-ins have started, decking and insulation are being installed, and what were just holes two months ago are starting to take shape as the highly technical yet stunningly beautiful buildings they will come to be.

(Updated: January 18, 2016)


Campus Construction Update - Early Winter 2015


December 8, 2015   |   A Glimpse of the Future

The view from the Hardy Administration Building showing the beginning of steel framing for the new Administration/Cafeteria Building (foreground), the framing for Hurst Hall (background, left), the historic Newman Mansion/AMFS Business Building in its new location (background, center), and the elevator shaft for the Upper Studio Building (background, right). Photo: Harry Teague

Below: Work completed between late October and mid-January.

Foundation Work in Oct.

At the end of October, Shaw Construction workers were completing foundations for multiple new buildings on Campus, including the Upper Studio Building, above.

True to History 

Stones from the original foundation of the mining building used as the AMFS Business Office were removed one-by-one and numbered so masons could put them back in their exact original order. Workers were shielded from the colder weather by tarps.

Demolition Wraps Up

Also in October, demolition work continued in the Hardy Administration Building. Seen here is the corner of the building that formerly housed the AMFS's Artistic Administration offices.

Utility Work Completed

Also at the end of October, the water service lines to all started buildings had been installed and pressure tested, which is seen here at the Upper Studio Building. 

Historic Grout Techniques

This photo shows the AMFS Business Office’s stone work, which was completed in the beginning of December. The workers used the grout techniques of the late twentieth century to re-apply these late twentieth-century stones.     

1890s Framing

Workers tore eleven decades of drywall, floors, and ceilings out of the Hardy Administration Building, revealing the original rough-hewn wood framing no one has seen since the late 1890s.

Structural Enhancements

A closer look at the structure of the Hardy Administration Building revealed the need for further structural enhancements. Additional work was done to the roof, pictured above, some walls, and the foundation.

Old Stairs, New Stairs

The old stairs in the Hardy Administration Building remained in place, while in November, a new set of stairs was built right on top of them. The new stairs conformed to modern standards, including a gentler angle of incline.

Cozy Concrete

This photo shows the "concrete cozy" over the foundation of the Upper Studio Building--tenting that, along with heaters, keeps the concrete warm in order to cure properly.

Stronger than Steel

The Hardy Administration Building roof work is shown from the inside in a November 12 photo. The wooden support under the window is "glulam," engineered wood that, pound for pound, is stronger than steel. 

The Race for Concrete

By the middle of November, concrete was being poured for Hurst Hall’s foundation. The concrete is mixed off-site and must get to the site quickly, before freezing, and be warmed for seven days for proper curing. Photo: Harry Teague.

Steel Rises

In early December, cranes rolled on to the site, and steel beams began to fly into place, forming the frames that will shape these buildings and, ultimately, this Campus. Photo: Harry Teague.

Hurst Hall Framing

Framing began first on Hurst Hall, pictured here at left. The framing was complete in just over a week. Photo: Harry Teague.

More Hurst Hall

Hurst Hall will be the athletic facility for the AMFS's partner, Aspen Country Day School. The floor is the size of a regulation gym and the height was calculated for optimal acoustics at that floor size.

New Cafeteria/Offices

Pictured above, on December 17, is the framing for the new Administration Offices/Cafeteria.

Hurst Hall Takes Shape

With the roof on and tented to protect it from the elements, Hurst Hall starts to look and feel like the beautiful space it will be soon.

Signature Framing

Another view of Hurst Hall. Those familiar with the Campus's other two rehearsal halls will recognize the crossed-wire structural bracing. Photo: Harry Teague.

Sparks on Snow

Frosty days were the scene of showers of sparks as welding went on throughout December and in to January.                                                                                                   


Song on Site

AMFS VP and General Manager Daniel Song stands where his office will be in six months time.

Old and New Together

The view from the Cafeteria/Administration Offices shows the 1890s historic house elegantly flanked by two new buildings.


Matthew and Carolyn Bucksbaum Campus
Fall 2015 Update


Bulldozers rolled on to Campus just three days after the end of the 2015 summer Festival, on August 27, 2015.

In August and September, old buildings were demolished to make way for the new. Gone are the classroom buildings, "Isolde" studio, and maintenance buildings that were past the ponds by the Business Office. The walls of the 100-plus-year-old Hardy Administration Building were opened up for inspection and in preparation for renovation.

As soon as the debris was cleared, foundation work began--digging and driving metal rods called micropiles down deep in to the earth and rock. Repairs began on the Administration Building, including jacking up a corner of the foundation nine inches to make it level. Site infrastructure is being installed in the back part of the site; September saw workers extending the water line.

In early October, the second historic building on Campus, formerly known as the Business Office, was lifted and moved to make room for the Aspen Country Day School Middle School Building and playing field; the building will house teaching studios and practice rooms for the AMFS).

Along with the foundation work, elevator shafts are being built and sub-grade mechanical and utility work has begun.

In coming weeks: construction will switch from digging down to building up. Steel beams will go up and roofs will go on in November and December.

(Updated: October 20, 2015)


Fall 2015

Bulldozers Came August 27

Shaw Construction returned to the Bucksbaum Campus just three days after the summer Festival ended. Bulldozers started demolition and digging in short order to meet the tight construction schedule. Trees and bushes pulled were chipped, as seen here.

Making Way for Building

Vegetation surrounding the Great Pond was pulled to make way for equipment work on the foundation for Hurst Hall. The ponds look bare without the familiar greenery, as seen in this photo taken in September 1.


Goodbye Isolde

Across the ponds and next to the Business Building, the small duo-studio building, affectionately known as "Isolde," was the first building to be torn down in this phase. This photo, taken September 1, shows where it had been.

Waterline Extended

In this phase, water, sewer, and other infrastructure will be extended to the back part of the Campus. The waterline extension went smoothly during the sunny September weather, as is shown in the photo above taken on September 24. 


Excavation Begins

Next to the Hardy Administration Building will be a companion building with a cafeteria on the first floor and offices on the second floor. Here, in a photo taken on September 24, excavation for its foundation begins.

Going Deeper

Another view of excavation for the foundation of the new cafeteria/offices building. Fall colors are starting to show.


Another View

Another view of the excavation for the cafeteria/office building shows the existing, historic Hardy Administration Building on the side where the buildings will be connected. The basement, formerly used as the cafeteria, will be finished and used for storage.


Lobby of Admin Building

Plans are to restore the historic mining building, including what had been the AMFS lobby and was before a place for the miners to congregate, seen above on September 30. The original wood floor, fireplace, and high ceilings will make this again a nice place to gather.


Driving Micropiles 

Micropiles are rods driven deep in to the earth and rock to create a building's foundation. Here, from September 18, a photo shows the machine driving them for Hurst Hall.


New Spot for Old Building

The former AMFS Business Office will be moved about 30 feet further back on the Campus to accommodate the new site design with a Middle School building and playing field where it used to sit. Here, on September 17, they start to dig the new foundation.


Another Historic Fireplace 

Inside the AMFS Business Office, another historic fireplace is opened up for checking before the move to its new location.


Preparing for House Move

Bailey House Movers set up beams under the AMFS Business Office, once the home of the Newman Mine foreman, in preparation for moving the structure.


House Move Part 2

On Monday, October 12, the house, still sitting on large metal beams, was attached to dollies with large rubber wheels, and a truck--ready for the drive 150 feet to the new foundation for the structure.

Exacting Work

Each rock of the exterior of the Business Building foundation was carefully labelled as it was disassembled so that it could be reassembled exactly as it was.

Elevator Shafts Rising

Foundation excavation for the two-story Middle School Building began literally moments after the AMFS Business Building moved. Already in progress was the elevator shaft, seen here reaching skyward on October 15. Photo: Harry Teague


Inside the Admin Building

The Hardy Administration Building was originally used by the Newman Mine in the 1800s for its miners and operations. As part of its restoration and repair, non-historic walls were removed. Remaining are brick walls, wood floors, and a walk-in safe (right).


View From Admin Building

A view through the windows of the Hardy Administration Building of the other historic building on the Campus, known as the Business Office. The smaller building was used as the home of the Newman Mine foreman.


Foundation for Hurst Hall 

Here, in a photo taken on September 24, a worker seals the concrete in the foundation for Hurst Hall. Hurst Hall will be the largest hall on Campus and can accommodate a large Romantic orchestra.


A Solid Foundation 

After it is moved, the historic building will have something it never had before: a truly solid modern foundation. Here, on September 24, it takes shape. The Business Office, seen in the background in this photo, waits patiently.


Mining Wheel Unearthed

Occasionally mining days detritus shows up during the digging. On September 18, the photo above was snapped of an unearthed mining cart wheel.


Lateral Slide

The building moved on rollers across the beams, with motion as smooth as glass. Photos taken on October 9, 2015.   


Almost There

Shortly after noon the truck tidily drove the house over next to its new foundation. The actual building movement took only about three minutes, during a week-plus of careful set-up and adjustments.

Finally There

On October 20, the AMFS Business Building finally completed its move and slid on to its new foundation. Photo: Harry Teague

Special Air Ducts

These special, large-scale air ducts (for heating and cooling) are seen being installed for Hurst Hall on October 20. The size allows air to move slowly, and thus silently, so that rehearsing musicians are not accompanied by an HVAC hum. Photo: Harry Teague