Matthew and Carolyn Bucksbaum Campus
Spring 2016 Update


It's all hands on deck and a seven-days-a-week schedule as the team moves in to the home stretch on the Campus. Targeting May and June certificate-of-occupancy dates, the approximately 200 workers are creating a "hive of activity" and a "wonderful, busy mess of trades" as teams are on site working on multiple facets of the project at once.

The buildings have truly taken shape now and the Campus's beautiful new profile is set. Work is progressing quickly in the areas of siding, drywall, electrical, mechanical, and plumbing.

Hurst Hall, a dramatic and spacious rehearsal hall, is furthest along with a complex array of different siding materials (metal, wood-colored cementitious Minerit, Kalwall, and glass) coming together to striking effect. Inside, the acoustic clouds are finished on the ceiling and diffusers are being installed on the walls.

Hurst Hall will double as the gym for Campus partner Aspen Country Day School (ACDS), and, in fact, it was the measurements of a regulation middle-school gym that determined the floor size for the building. The considerable height was then determined by what volume was needed for the correct acoustics with that floor space. Removable wall panels will change the walls from multi-angled in the summer (which produce the correct acoustics) to flat during the school year for optimal ball play. This is yet another example of the intensive attention to detail that both partners brought to the planning of this joint Campus.

As with Campus's other rehearsal halls, huge air ducts in Hurst Hall will convey the heating and cooling--ducts 20 percent larger even than those in Edlis Neeson Hall. (The large ducts make the air flow silent as to not disturb rehearsals.) The chiller is housed on the roof of the building, necessitating significant amounts of sound insulation. There is even transparent glass underneath the translucent, day-lighting Kalwall material to provide more sound protection.

The Upper Studio Building, which will function as the ACDS science and middle school building, features four brass-specific practice and teaching studios. How to isolate instruments that can reach decibels over 110? (For reference, a jackhammer blasts away at about 120 dB.) The brass rooms feature dividing walls made of solid cinder blocks--the only walls like that on the entire Campus. Other rooms in the building will feature sound-proof Skyfold room dividers like the ones in the Lower Studio Building to create two teaching studios from each classroom.

The new cafeteria will be a jewel of the Campus and serve as a central gathering space. It features a wrap-around deck, creek-side counter, and a bright, glass-enclosed dining area for 140. The professional kitchen is significantly larger than the former one and there are multiple food prep spaces. Mechanical, electrical, and plumbing work continue "at a furious pace," kitchen exhaust hoods are in, and spaces are being readied for the rest of the equipment to arrive. Planning, down to the centimeter, has been intensive for this space. One note of whimsy: In the dining area, a central station for condiments will be made from a cored tree with a circular shelf attached. The construction team cheerfully calls it "the Ketchup Tree."

The renovated administration building and new administrative space above the cafeteria are starting to show the new graceful flow as hallways and offices take shape. The restored historic lobby space will have a working gas fireplace insert in the 1890s fireplace. It will reflect cozily in the off-seasons on the original exposed beams of the 20-foot ceiling.

The beauty--both old and new--of the Campus is being revealed at an entirely new level now. The care for detail of the historic mine owners and the vision and intention of architect Harry Teague are coming together in a way more spectacular than one could have imagined.

Stay tuned for one final construction update in early May--and mark your calendar for July 11 for the official grand opening celebration of this glorious Campus.

(Updated: March 18, 2016)