The room is as cool on the inside as it is on the outside. If you’ve been on campus recently, you know the one I’m talking about: The soaring second-story, glassed-in wing of the new Parkview Residence Hall. With clear panes on three sides, the spacious multipurpose room overlooks FIU Stadium.
The behind-the-scenes story of Parkview gave me even more appreciation of FIU’s newest student living complex set to open in August. First, it’s being built by one of our own, Chad Moss ‘94, a graduate of FIU’s construction management program and a member of the FIU Foundation Board of Directors. His construction management firm, Moss and Associates, is using the same cost-saving technology in Parkview that they used to build Marlins Ballpark. The Miami Herald recently reported that the Marlins Stadium is projected to come in tens of millions of dollars less than budgeted.
FIU Magazine Senior Multimedia Producer Doug Garland and I interviewed Moss recently right in that spectacular glass room. He talked about what it means to be involved in one of FIU’s most significant new building developments in years. “It’s very special,” he said. “I’m glad to be associated with the campus in this manner.”
FIU was a different university – with almost no student living – when Moss attended in the 1990s.
“It was a very prominent commuter school that didn’t have a lot of the amenities you currently see on campus,” he said. “There was basically one dorm and it has been there for a very long time. If you would have told me the construction company our family owns 20 years ago would be building here one day, I would never have believed it. Doing this project really brings home the full circle experience for me. We love this school.”
Today, Moss employs at least 30 FIU graduates and he pays for each of them to have a lifetime membership in the Alumni Association.
Parkview is the Moss family’s first FIU project and by all measures, they’ve done a great job. It’s on time and on budget. The company estimates it has saved FIU $1.5 million in change orders using building information technology and virtual construction design. They believe this in this technology so strongly that the family wants FIU students to learn it too.
The family has recently donated $250,000 to our College of Engineering and Computing to open a new laboratory that that teaches these time and cost-saving practices.
“We used it on Marlins Stadium with great success,” Moss said. “The students will learn the very same process that we used on this project to help coordinate plans and eliminate potential change orders before you start construction.”
One thing is for sure. The 618 upperclassmen who will be moving into Parkview later this summer are going to be thrilled. The glass multipurpose room will be equipped with sofas and chairs and tables and a huge flatscreen TV….and that’s just one part of what makes Parkview unique. Stay tuned until August when we will bring you more details about Parkview and our interview with Chad Moss.