University of Miami Campus Tour and Architectural Archives

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The University of Miami in Coral Gables was originally founded in 1926 on a 160-acre site donated by the city’s founder George E. Merrick, with an ambitious Beaux-Arts masterplan and preliminary designs of Spanish revival buildings by Paul Chalfin, Denman Fink, and Phineas Paist. Due to the devastating hurricane of 1926, followed by the Great Depression and then World War II, the university’s building campaign floundered until the post-war era when its first president, Bowman Foster Ashe, took advantage of the U.S. government’s new educational programs to launch on the twentieth anniversary of the university’s founding, a bold vision of a new modern campus.

Ashe hired Miami architects Robert Law Weed and Marion Manley to provide the university with a new master plan on the original site, though now the vision was a radical departure from the 1926 plan offering instead a flexible and functionalist approach that had never really been tested in university settings other than at Florida Southern College by Frank Lloyd Wright (1938) and at Illinois Institute of Technology by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe (1941). Its planning featured distinct administrative, educational, residential, religious, and recreational zones, separated by generous areas of landscaping. With covered walkways framing outdoor gardens and terraces, open galleries and staircases, and thin footprints that allowed for natural ventilation, the architecture also reflected the modernist and tropicalist sensibilities that were shaping Miami during the postwar era, becoming one of the region’s most important emblems. 
This tour will focus on several signature campus buildings, including the School of Architecture, the Merrick Building, and the Dooly Memorial Classroom Building, the Cox Science Center, and the Whitten Student Center. It will culminate at the Richter Library with a private tour of two extraordinary University archives: the university’s Special Collections, and the Cuban Heritage Collection. 
Allan Shulman, FAIA, LEED AP, Principal of Shulman+Associates, will lead the campus tour. Dr. Victor Deupi, Senior Lecturer at the University of Miami, will lead the trip to the architectural archives. 
Walking Tour (Tour starts and ends on the UM campus, participants must provide their own transportation.)
Thursday, May 30, 9:30–11:30am 


All tours will be submitted for AIA credits.