Mr Mxyzptlk

January 19th, 2012 at 6:17 PM ^

Great.  I hope its on par with what the basketball players have in the new PDC.  State of the art training facilities are a must if we want to recruit against the top football programs.

Raoul

January 19th, 2012 at 6:46 PM ^

Brandon is quoted in the press release saying that after the renovation the museum will be open "from time to time" to the public:

"The museum will be redone and modernized during the renovations," added Brandon. "We will have more interactive displays to go along with the trophies and memorabilia. This space will also highlight the new 'Michigan Football Legends' recipients that began this year with the induction of Desmond Howard. The overall renovations will provide a 'wow' experience for our student-athletes, coaches and recruits as they step inside Schembechler Hall. We also hope to open these spaces up from time to time to allow our fans and supporters to enjoy this celebration of Michigan football."

Don

January 20th, 2012 at 11:58 AM ^

"We are looking to transform the exterior look of this building to match the other facilities on our athletic campus."

This implies that the renovation is not simply putting in a new entryway, but will also result in altering the exterior appearance of the entire building. If this is accurate, hallelujah. From an architectural design standpoint, that building has been an eyesore since it was built, IMHO.

It was designed by the then-famous and very prominent American/Latvian architect Gunnar Birkerts, who had achieved local fame for his firm's design of the below-grade Law School Library expansion. I don't know who made the decision to select Birkerts for Schembechler Hall, but it was done long before Martin became AD. Birkerts was a confirmed modernist architect whose design sensibilities and goals did not place priority on considerations such as fitting into an existing architectural fabric. Sometimes this approach can be the perfect solution, and sometimes it can yield horrible results, as it did here.

Birkerts is certainly still regarded as one of the world's notable architects from the 1970s-1990s, and he's received many, many awards for his work in the U.S. and Europe. However, I think he was the wrong choice for Schembechler Hall.

Ironically, the other foray into hiring internationally-known architects for work on the athletic campus was a much greater disaster. The infamous halo around Michigan Stadium was designed by Venturi, Scott Brown & Associates, an extremely influential firm based in Philadelphia. I believe that their selection was largely done at the behest of former UM President Lee Bollinger. FAIL.

Don

January 20th, 2012 at 1:46 PM ^

in the selection of Schembechler Hall's architect; I only know he was involved in the halo stuff.

There are early sketches of Birkerts's on the Bentley Library website for the building, and they're dated 1985-1990. I would guess that it was erected in that time span, so whoever the AD and UM President were at the time would have selected Birkerts. Shapiro? Roberson? Duderstadt? Or was Bo AD then?