The E. James and Eileen P. Ferland Engineering Education and Design Center (EEDC) is a multi-use academic and laboratory building and the new heart of undergraduate engineering education at the University of Maine. The three-story, 107,000 SF state-of-the-art facility was designed in partnership with Ellenzweig, a Boston architectural firm focused on the design of teaching and research laboratories.
Ferland Engineering Education and Design Center is a strategic, technology-rich configuration of teaching spaces, laboratories, collaborative areas, and public spaces designed to support engineering education, design, and research. Ferland EEDC’s focal point is a series of hands-on, team-based laboratories where students from multiple engineering disciplines can collaborate on design projects. While several departments utilize the building, Ferland EEDC specifically supports UMaine’s Department of Mechanical Engineering and the biomedical engineering portion of the Department of Chemical and Biomedical Engineering, as well as serving as the key teaching laboratory for Mechanical Engineering Technology.
Ferland EEDC’s primary entrance opens into an expansive Welcome and STEM Outreach Center, designed to accommodate touring groups and gatherings. Classrooms at Ferland EEDC range in sizes and can be easily reconfigured from lecture to active learning. The new building offers a light-filled, collaborative commons with café in close proximity to student workspaces and team rooms. Other spaces include faculty and staff offices, conference rooms, and non-formal meeting areas.
Ferland Engineering Education and Design Center was designed to LEED certification standards. The design process included life cycle impact reduction analysis to enable the team to select low-impact materials. Sustainable features include optimized energy performance with extensive energy recovery throughout the building; separate air handlers for research areas, labs, offices, and public areas; natural, durable materials including wood and tile; and design decisions that reduce the building’s impact, including parking sized to minimize solar gain, exterior lighting that mitigates light pollution, and steps to reduce outside and inside water use.
The project was awarded ACEC Maine’s Grand Conceptor Award for engineering excellence. WBRC shared the award with Thornton-Tomasetti, structural engineer and sustainable design consultant.