NMU – Northern Center
MSUFCU – Berkley Branch
15 November 2019
Bedrock Detroit – Monroe Blocks
10 January 2020
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DescriptionA new, welcoming and attractive front door to Northern Michigan University, the Northern Center serves the University and region as a first-class conference and event center, and serves as a gathering space for students to meet, relax, study, and socialize. Originally constructed in 1959 with subsequent additions in 1964 and 1966, the Don H. Bottum University Center was a gateway to NMU’s campus and was in need of a significant renovation and modernization. Utilized as a gathering and convention venue for not only the campus community, but for the region and Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, the Center’s conference spaces and public areas lacked in appeal, capacity, and amenities seen in most modern facilities. Neumann/Smith helped NMU create a new and modern venue. To increase student traffic to the facility, the student enrichment and organization space was enhanced and made more visible. A student activity zone was also created for students to relax and socialize outside of class. To enhance the center’s large-scale group gathering capabilities, existing break out and meeting rooms were upgraded and enlarged, and a more welcoming pre-function and networking space was incorporated. Truly unique to the center is a new exterior facade constructed at the main entrance, creating a significant identity and showcasing the activity within. The project also included the elimination of existing deferred maintenance items and updates of all building systems including building code and accessibility deficiencies.