Dartmouth Engineer - The Magazine of Thayer School of EngineeringDartmouth Engineer - The Magazine of Thayer School of Engineering

Construction: Beam Team

TOPPING OUT: Left to right, Associate Dean Charles Wyman, Senior Executive Officer Lawrence McKinnon; Overseer Peter Fahey ’68, Th’69, ’70; M.E.M. candidate Eleanor Alexander ’04; Ph.D. candidate Douglas Van Citters ’99; Adjunct Assistant Professor Peter Robbie; Assistant Professor Christopher Levey; Interim Dean William Lotko; architect Fred Koetter; and Gilbane Construction Co. executive Douglas Butler with the signature beam. Photograph by Joe Mehling ’69.
TOPPING OUT: Left to right, Associate Dean Charles Wyman, Senior Executive Officer Lawrence McKinnon; Overseer Peter Fahey ’68, Th’69, ’70; M.E.M. candidate Eleanor Alexander ’04; Ph.D. candidate Douglas Van Citters ’99; Adjunct Assistant Professor Peter Robbie; Assistant Professor Christopher Levey; Interim Dean William Lotko; architect Fred Koetter; and Gilbane Construction Co. executive Douglas Butler with the signature beam. Photograph by Joe Mehling ’69.

A flag and tree top out the roof of the MacLean Engineering Sciences Center. Photograph by Joe Mehling '69.
A flag and tree top out the roof of the MacLean Engineering Sciences Center. Photograph by Joe Mehling '69.

One of the steel beams in the framework of the MacLean Engineering Sciences Center carries more than its share of the structural load. It also bears the signatures of scores of members of the Thayer School community.

Some 200 students, faculty, staff, and alumni signed the whitewashed beam before it was hoisted into place during a brief ceremony March 30. The festivities also included a “Topping Out” ritual, adorning the final roof beam with a flag and a live tree, meant to bring good fortune to the building’s occupants. A round of applause thanked the various construction crews who have been laboring on the project since July of 2004.

“It’s a lot of fun to be at this point,” noted Interim Dean William Lotko. “The building has the DNA of Thayer School in its structure.”

Architect Fred Koetter beamed as he viewed the building’s skeleton. “It’s always a dramatic moment,” he said. “We enjoyed the engagement of the school and the College in this project.”

The MacLean Engineering Sciences Center, named for major donors Mary Ann and Barry MacLean ’60, Th’61, is scheduled to be completed in spring of 2006.

For more photos, visit our MacLean Engineering Sciences Center set on Flickr.

Categories: The Great Hall, Construction

Tags: design

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