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Ford Motor Company Robotics Building, Univ. of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI
Ford Motor Company Robotics Building, Univ. of Michigan
Machine-like precision.
Exploring the future of robotics and autonomous vehicles.
Co-location sparks collaboration at the University of Michigan.
From idea-sharing and cross-pollination to efficient operations, most research programs benefit from the co-location of affiliated research disciplines. With the new Ford Motor Company Robotics Building, the University of Michigan is taking this idea one (autonomous) step further.

Designed to meet three critical, overarching objectives—flexibility, collaboration and innovation—the interdisciplinary facility will both accommodate the common needs of each research discipline and seamlessly incorporate spaces crafted to the exact specifications of individual teams: a three-story fly zone for autonomous aerial vehicles. An outdoor obstacle course for walking robots. High-bay garage space for self-driving cars.

The completed building will not only place the University of Michigan among a select group of universities to boast a dedicated robotics facility, but also deepen the university’s relationship with Ford. In an unprecedented move, the major automobile manufacturer has plans to lease the facility’s fourth floor, establishing its first research laboratory located on a university campus.

The future of robotics and autonomous vehicles is wide open; now, with a state-of-the-art facility, world-class faculty and elite student researchers, the University of Michigan is positioned to take the lead.
Results
The four-story, 140,000 square foot building will include high bay labs, dedicated shops, classrooms and office space, as well as co-location and proximate support functions for related research areas.
Large, open areas and a start-up-styled collaboration zone will promote transparency, visibility and knowledge transfer and provide space for group demonstrations.
Shared research and support space will encourage collaboration and cross-pollination between faculty, students and researchers.
Ford will lease the facility’s fourth floor, establishing its first on-campus research laboratory.
The completed building will place the University of Michigan among a select group of universities to boast a dedicated robotics facility.
Project Data
Ford Motor Company Robotics Building 2013-10079-000
University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI
PROJECT SCOPE
New Construction
HED ROLE
Design Architect
RSF/GSF
137,000
CONSTRUCTION COST
$54.0 Million
SUSTAINABILITY LEVEL
HED Standard
YEAR COMPLETED
2019
Project Team
  • Michael Cooper
    PE, LEED AP, MBA
    Managing Principal
    President
    PRINCIPAL
  • Charles Jacobs
    ASLA, PMP, LEED AP BD+C
    Associate Principal
    Project Management Leader
    PROJECT MANAGER
  • Shaun Rihacek
    LEED AP
    Associate
    Architecture + Design

  • Jack Bullo
    AIA, LEED AP
    Principal
    Architecture + Design

  • John Giroux
    Architecture + Design

  • John Clay
    PE, LEED AP
    Associate
    Mechanical Engineering

  • Peyman Ramin
    PE, LEED AP
    Principal
    Electrical Engineering

  • Christopher Korte
    Electrical Engineering

  • Jie Liu
    Assoc. AIA, LEED AP BD+C
    Architecture + Design

  • Andrea Paupert
    Mechanical Engineering

  • Lauren Roller
    PE
    Associate
    Structural Engineering

  • Kenneth Hornfeld
    Mechanical Engineering

  • Mark Hieber
    ASLA, LEED AP
    Principal
    Landscape Architecture

  • Emily Karaba
    Interior Architecture

  • Allen Kruse
    Architecture + Design

  • Christopher George
    Associate
    Architecture + Design

  • Kam Chow
    Electrical Engineering

  • Jonathan Tull
    Architecture + Design

  • Mijung Ko
    ASLA, LEED Green Associate
    Landscape Architecture

  • Jacob Kurth
    RA
    Architecture + Design

Exploring the future of robotics and autonomous vehicles.
Ford Motor Company Robotics Building, Univ. of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI
PROJECT DATA
PROJECT TEAM
Machine-like precision.
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