New Construction

Auburn University Completes Construction on Culinary Science Center

Auburn University in Auburn, Ala., recently celebrated the grand opening of the Tony and Libba Rane Culinary Science Center, according to a news release. The 142,000-square-foot facility plays home to learning environments combined with a luxury hotel, restaurant, dining hall, and more. The university partnered with HPM for program management services.

The news release reports that the new facility offers hands-on learning experiences for the university’s hospitality and culinary science students. It includes Class-A training kitchens; labs; a brewery; a retail food hall; and 1856, a tasting-menu-only teaching restaurant. Construction began in 2019.

“We have had a wonderful experience working with Auburn University Facilities Management to bring this one-of-a-kind hospitality learning environment to life,” said Ryan Austin, HPM President. “The strong relationships we have formed with our partners have driven home success for this project and kept us focused throughout every step, even as we faced a global pandemic. This is another successful project that we are pleased to add to our portfolio of high-profile hospitality and higher-education initiatives across the Southeast.”

HPM’s preconstruction and construction services entailed working with design teams to make sure preliminary plans lined up with the project’s budget and timeline. HPM also coordinated communication between all partners and subcontractors to make sure the project’s timing was on track. Another part of the project was the construction of a six-story, $10-million nearby parking deck before work on the culinary center began in earnest.

“I am proud of our team’s dedication to collaboration and preplanning, which ultimately led to a smooth transition between each phase of the project lifecycle,” said Caleb Camp, HPM Operations Manager. “This facility is a trailblazer in both the hospitality and higher education industries, providing a range of training opportunities that are not offered at other institutions in the country. HPM’s expertise in owner’s representation and construction management maintained cost efficiency and ensured this project was completed to Auburn University’s high standard of excellence.”

The university also partnered with architecture and design firm Cooper Carry, as well as general contractor Bailey-Harris Construction, according to the press release.

About the Author

Matt Jones is senior editor of Spaces4Learning. He can be reached at [email protected].