Tippin Gymnasium at Clarion University Breaks Ground

June 21, 2018 Cambridge, MA - A groundbreaking ceremony was recently held at Clarion University for the renovation of Tippin Gymnasium, the University’s primary NCAA athletic venue. Besides helping the University recruit top-notch athletic talent, once completed, the 155,000 square foot complex will better connect to the surrounding campus and community with a more open and transparent building design. Renovations to the existing gymnasium will include a new entrance and lobby, complete overhaul of the basketball courts and seating, natatorium renovation with a new combination swimming/diving pool, expanded areas for wrestling, new weight room, new locker rooms and restrooms and a new auxiliary gymnasium.

The project was designed by a joint venture of DLA+ Architecture & Interior Design of Pittsburgh, PA and GUND Partnership of Cambridge, MA. The early design goal was to bring the facility up to contemporary standards, bring light into the facility and optimize social exchanges among students. The new gymnasium will better serve student-athletes and the entire intercollegiate athletic program, as well as create new opportunities for physical fitness, nutrition and wellness programming. The project is designed to achieve LEED Silver certification from the US Green Building Council and is expected to be complete in Sept 2019.

Dan Rutledge, AIA, LEED AP BD+C led the Tippin Gymnasium project. For more information, contact Dan.

Brockelman Student Center opens at Cushing Hall, Westminster School

The relocation of the dining hall created an opportunity to repurpose a portion of Cushing Hall. The first building at Westminster, Cushing Hall is the figurative and emotional center of campus and serves as the perfect location for students to meet. Part of a larger renovation project, the new 1,674 sf student center is a central gathering spot for students and faculty. It features a variety of comfortable and durable seating, game tables, two flat screen televisions and a 365 sf grill, offering food and drinks for purchase when the dining hall is closed. 

Wood paneling recalls that found in nearby Fearn Hall and brings formality to the space, consistent with the School’s architecture. An original fireplace mantel is restored and the fireplace converted to gas. Game tables, modern light fixtures and a soft color palette bring a fresh, youthful feel, an aspect that was important to students involved in the design process. 

The renovation also includes new restrooms; offices for the Advancement Office, deans and directors of student life and athletics; conference room and food storage. Space was reconfigured to open sight lines from the entry corridor directly to the headmaster’s study in order to encourage interaction and support the school’s family ethos. 

Cushing Hall uses energy produced by geothermal wells that also supply the nearby Armour Academic Center

Read more about the renovation in the Westminster Bulletin, pages 16 – 23.

Dan Rutledge, AIA, LEED AP BD+C and Michael Roper, Assoc. AIA, led the Brockelman Center project. Contact Dan or Michael for more information.

GUND's Team Grows

GUND Partnership welcomes Steve Dadagian, AIA, LEED AP BD+C as Principal and Valerie Puchades, CPSM as Director of Marketing and celebrates the promotion of Scott Westerbeke AIA, LEED AP to Associate.

Steve spent much of his early career at GUND. After managing his own practice and serving in a senior role at a local architecture firm, Steve returns as one of four Principals of the firm. Working with the leadership team, Steve will focus on innovative learning environments that respond to changing pedagogies and ideals. With his background in independent school design, he will continue to grow GUND’s work on campuses across the US. Steve has over 25 years of experience designing buildings and spaces for Independent School and Higher Education clients. His expertise includes designing modern buildings that are contextually sensitive to historic campus settings and designing athletic, learning and gathering spaces that emphasize creative thinking, collaboration and flexibility. 

Valerie brings 20 years of marketing experience to GUND. With her background in strategic planning, she will be helping GUND identify the challenges its clients are facing today and into the future. This knowledge will help GUND’s architects continue to deliver innovative buildings that solve their clients’ most pressing challenges. She will be working with the leadership team to find opportunities to tell client success stories through traditional and digital media, starting with fundraising efforts and continuing through post-occupancy. Valerie is an active member of Society for Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) and serves as Vice President/President-elect for SMPS Boston.

Scott joined GUND in 2004 and has worked on a large variety of project types during his tenure, including studio art facilities, dining halls and student housing for higher education institutions; art galleries; and high-end residential projects. Scott brings a technical sensibility to his work, bolstered by his lengthy experience performing construction administration. He has administered projects to LEED Silver certification and led projects that went on to win design awards from the Society of College and University Planning and the Boston Society of Architects.

“With the strengthening of our team we are positioning the firm to better serve our clients’ needs, expanding areas of expertise, and focusing on high level project delivery, with the continued goal of providing great design that is synonymous with GUND Partnership,” says David Zenk, Principal at GUND.

Explore GUND Partnership’s Boston Architecture Projects

There’s a new way to explore GUND Partnership’s contribution to Boston’s rich architectural landscape. Recently launched, the AIA Guide to Boston Architecture app is the definitive local field guide with more than 1,200 sites across the metro Boston area, organized by neighborhood, style, architect, and award winners.

GUND is excited to be featured in the app. The profile, written by the app’s editorial team, gives a brief history on the firm’s work in Boston and includes work spanning four decades. 

The app is always current and location-aware so you can quickly see what’s nearby anywhere you go, including plenty of guides and tours, all available on an elegantly designed iPhone app.

David Zenk to Moderate a Panel at USITT on High Performance Performing Arts Centers

Join David Zenk at USITT on Thursday, March 15, 2018 at 2:45 PM for High Performance: Why Retrofitted and Renovated Performing Arts Centers can be Better than New. As often cited, “the most sustainable building is the one that is already built.” Join the discussion and learn how renovating, retrofitting or repurposing a performing arts venue can be a valid option to building a new facility. Learn how an existing building can prompt new design paradigms for music, dance, and theatre and how old buildings can inspire dancers, actors and musicians. This session will explore practical challenges and put forward fresh ideas for your next performing arts center design project.

The USITT 58th Annual Conference will be taking place in Fort Lauderdale, Florida From March 14 - 17, 2018. David will be joined by Curtis Kasefang and Jason Prichard of Theatre Consultant Collaborative and Carl Giegold of Threshold Acoustics. Learn more at:

Westminster School Celebrates Dedication of Three New Buildings
On October 13th, The Westminster School celebrated the dedication of three new facilities - Armstrong Dining Hall, Kelter House, a residence hall, and Brockelman Student Center that will transform student life on campus. The new dining hall and latest new residence opened in September with the beginning of the school year, while the renovation of the student center will be completed in January 2018. Each building is part of an overarching plan to enhance the student experience to the Simsbury campus.

The dedication festivities took place in the new dining hall. Equipped with a state of the art kitchen and servery, terrace and patio space for afterhours gathering and socializing, and a seating area large enough to accommodate all students and faculty in a family style setting, Armstrong Dining Hall hosted the gala, guests enjoyed dinner and special music courtesy of Westminster students.

Dan Rutledge, GUND Partnership’s Project Manager, spoke about Armstrong Hall’s impact on the Westminster campus. “The campus dining was relocated from Cushing Hall, which traditionally is the heart of campus. Armstrong Dining Hall is sited such that Cushing lies between it and Armour Hall, Westminster’s main Academic Center. In this way, in its new role as the student center Cushing has become the connector between these two poles and continues to be cast as an important center of campus activity.”

Perhaps the key design feature of Armstrong Hall is simply its ability to allow all of Westminster’s students to gather and share family style meals in one place. “The Westminster community has always been very strong,” Rutledge continued. “But the new dining hall has given more room for the students and faculty to come together.” The entire class can comfortably assemble, which opens up a multitude of new opportunities for the school and the Westminster community.
Dan Rutledge, AIA, LEED AP BD+C and Michael Roper, AIA, were key figures in the Westminster Dining project. Contact Dan or Michael for more information.
Columbus Metropolitan Library Hosts Library Journal Design Institute
Openness, transparency, natural light, and the connection to outdoor space were not only the main themes discussed at the Library Journal's panel at Columbus Metropolitan Library, but provided the backdrop to the day's events. Christine Verbitzki, AIA, LEED AP BD+C, Principal of GUND Partnership participated in a detailed forum on modern library design and renovating older buildings, bringing them into the present.

Read more about the panel here.
Christine Verbitzki, AIA, LEED AP BD+C spoke at the LJ Design Institute Panel and David Zenk, AIA, LEED AP BD+C led the Columbus Metropolitan Library renovation project. Contact Christine or David for more info.
Gearan Center Featured in College Planning and Management
The Gearan Center for the Performing Arts at Hobart and William Smith Colleges was recently featured in an article on the College Planning and Management website. Staff members and key figures at HWS opened up on the building's mission, and the impact the Center has had on the Performing Arts departments.
Marissa Desmond, AIA, contributed to the Hobart and William Smith Performing Arts project. Contact Marissa for more info.
Duke Hall James Madison University Wins BSA Citation Award
Duke Hall at James Madison University, completed in 2014 by GUND Partnership in collaboration with Clark Nexsen, is one of six projects honored by the Boston Society of Architects with a Citation in the Higher Education category of Education Facilities Design. The awards were announced at the BSA’s annual gala in Boston on February 16. Duke Hall was the complete transformation of a former performing and visual arts center built in the 1960s into a 21st Century facility for studio arts, art history and design. The building is in the midst of the historic Bluestone Section at the University’s Harrisonburg, VA campus. Since its opening, it has become one of the favorite spots on campus for exhibitions, receptions and informal gatherings.
GUND Partnership's Graham Gund, FAIA, LEED AP, Dan Rutledge, AIA, LEED AP, BD+C and Yoo Jin Chung, AIA, LEED AP were key leaders in the JMU project. Contact Graham, Dan or Yoo Jin for more information.
HWS Gearan Center Achieves LEED Gold Certification
Gearan Center, Hobart and William Smith Colleges’ new performing arts center, has achieved LEED Gold certification. The 65,000 SF, $25 million (construction cost) project, designed by GUND and opened last year, began pursuing LEED Silver, but with the leadership of the building’s namesake Mark Gearan, HWS’s president, and execution by GUND Partnership, the project was able to achieve the higher designation.

The site had a tremendous positive effect in the LEED scoring process. Formerly a parking lot, the site was fitted with bioswales that filter runoff water. Among the other green features of the building: Use of recycled and certified wood; extensive use of LED lighting; the bringing of natural light into all interior spaces; a small green roof; and a consciously constrained building footprint and building volume, which, respectively, limited the building’s impact on the site and reduced the total building materials necessary.
The LEED Scorecard above shows the building’s performance in key categories.
Marissa Desmond, AIA, contributed to the Hobart and William Smith Performing Arts project. Contact Marissa for more info.