Defining a Common Goal to Design a Building of Impact


In this 21st century, it is truly amazing how quickly we can gather so much data with just a few mouse clicks! Our company database stores information for our 10,000+ projects, 4,500+ opportunity pursuits, 6,000+ companies, provides resume information for our 160+ employees, and even tells me that I have logged 51,665 hours to 344 Newcomb & Boyd projects (insert engineers and numbers jokes here).

This time includes:

While labor-intensive, none of these lengths can compare to the granddaddy of them all: Marsico Hall at the University of North Carolina with an incredible 5,980 hours of my time. This means more than 10% of my 25 years at Newcomb & Boyd has been devoted to this feat! Together, our Mechanical, Electrical, Plumbing, Fire Protection, Audio-Visual, Communications, Commissioning, and Security engineers spent 30,466 hours designing the high-rise laboratory and research facility.

Marsico Hall is 343,000 square feet of architectural, engineering and construction complexity.

What makes it so complex?

First of all, it houses research programs from the School of Medicine and the Eshelman School of Pharmacy, including:

  • the Marsico Lung Institute
  • the Biomedical Research Imaging Center
  • researchers from the Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, nanomedicine, microbiology and immunology, and pharmaco-engineering.

The building is also home to research animals with 3,000 small and 18 large animal cages.

On top of that, it holds a wide range of medical imaging equipment including a 3T MRI, a 7T MRI, a small bore 9T MRI, MR/PET, PET/CT, X-ray systems, and multiple NMRs.

There’s more.

It includes a radiochemistry suite complete with cyclotron, hot cells, and a Class 10,000 cleanroom.

Finally, it contains a District Energy Plant that uses electric centrifugal chillers to simultaneously make 130°F heating water and 42°F chilled water for other campus buildings.

Wrap all that up in a high-rise envelope and you have yourself one complex project.

The hope of everyone involved was that this facility would someday be instrumental in discovering treatments and cures for the diseases that impact the ones we love.

The key to a project this large and impressive is simple: great teamwork toward a common goal. Our common goal throughout the design and construction process was to provide the State of North Carolina with a state-of-the-art imaging research facility.

The hope of everyone involved was that this facility would someday be instrumental in discovering treatments and cures for the diseases that impact the ones we love. Many on the project team, including myself, took this one step further by dedicating their work on Marsico Hall to the memory of a loved one who passed. My father-in-law, Don Schuckers, was diagnosed with lung cancer just prior to the start of this project and passed away in April of 2012. Don, who was a carpenter by trade and later served as a construction supervisor, would have been impressed with the construction craftsmanship of this research building.

The remarkable teamwork between all individuals, and our commitment to the goal of creating a building that will leave an impact, was integral to the success of Marsico Hall.

Design Team
  • Perkins + Will – Durham
  • Mulkey Engineers & Consultants
  • Newcomb & Boyd
  • Surface 678
  • Jensen Hughes, Inc.
  • Facility Dynamics Engineering
  • RWDI Consulting Engineers & Scientists
Construction Team
  • Choate Construction Company – Raleigh
  • Kirlin Carolinas, LLC
  • Southern Comfort Air Systems
  • Advantage Fire Sprinkler Company
  • Starr Electric Company, Inc.
  • NC Communications
  • Johnson Controls Inc
  • Airflow Experts
Owner’s Team
  • North Carolina State Construction Office
  • Departments from UNC Chapel Hill, including Facilities Planning & Construction, Facilities Services, School of Medicine, Eshelman School of Pharmacy, Energy Services, Environment Health & Safety, and Information Technology Services.
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Comments ( 1 )

  • Elise Linde says:

    Jeff Dad and I are so proud of you. Your design goals reach out to students in the process of learning and provide state of the art facilities for your clients Charlies Clare, also would be very proud of you

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