Florida's only polytechnic will receive design to stand apart
The University of South Florida Polytechnic (USFP) has commissioned acclaimed architect Santiago Calatrava to design the first building for the school’s new campus in Lakeland, Florida and update the campus master plan, it was announced today.
Calatrava who is known for, among others, his design for the World Trade Center Transit Hub, will design the 100,000 net sq ft USFP Science & Technology building, which will sit on the northernmost corner of the campus at the intersection of Interstate 4 and the Polk Parkway. 550 acres of land were donated here by the Williams Company in 2003 and the new campus will occupy 171.5 acres. The Science & Technology building will be the cornerstone of the new campus, and will establish the design scheme for all buildings within phase I of the campus master plan. Groundbreaking is expected late this year, following final designs, with a scheduled opening in late summer 2012.
The USF Polytechnic facility will be Calatrava's first design in the southeastern U.S. Almost 70 years ago, legendary architect Frank Lloyd Wright made his mark on Lakeland with the Annie Pfieffer Chapel, the first of 10 structures he designed for Florida Southern College and a recent addition to the World Heritage List. With today’s announcement, the once-sleepy orange grove town – now at the center of Florida’s High Tech Corridor – will again be home to internationally acclaimed architecture.
Since its founding in 1988, USF Polytechnic has shared a campus with Polk State College in Lakeland. When complete, the new campus will offer the space and resources the university needs to expand from
its current 4,229 student body to 16,000 students.
Phase I is anticipated to cost $60-65 million and includes planning and construction of the Science & Technology building as well as
infrastructure for USFP’s greenfield site. To date USFP has received match eligible private gifts in excess of $10 million, with an additional $31.7 million received through state PECO allocations. An additional $10 million in PECO investment is scheduled for financial year 09-10. Total campus development is expected to cost approximately $200 million and will be
raised through private donations and public funds.
Calatrava, a graduate of a polytechnic university in Valencia, said, “I feel very fortunate to have been chosen to design the Science & Technology building for the University of South Florida Polytechnic’s new campus. As an architect and an engineer, I greatly value the schools of science and technology. It is my goal to create a facility that both unites and pays homage to these two fields, while providing generations of students with a state-of-the-art education center in which to learn and grow.”