Ennead Architects Uses Adobe DPS to Break New Ground in Architecture Communication
There’s much more to architecture than designing and constructing buildings. Design is the core of any project, and compelling visual communications can make or break it. Ennead Architects – a leading firm that has completed notable projects such as the Clinton Presidential Center, Rose Center for Earth and Space at the American Museum of Natural History and Natural History Museum of Utah, and many others – has taken this to heart.
Today, Ennead is innovating not only with its architectural designs, but also in how it’s helping clients communicate with stakeholders with vested interests. Using Adobe Digital Publishing Suite (DPS), Ennead created an app for the new Robert B. Rowling Hall at the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas (UT) at Austin, set to open in 2017. The app is a leading example of how firms in the architecture, engineering and construction industry can transform their client communications.
The app allows users to scroll through design plans, view floor-by-floor information, track the progress of construction, and more. Designed by Ennead Architects and Jacobs Engineering, the new building will help physically bridge Austin’s downtown scene with the UT Austin campus. In addition, its location on the northeast corner of Martin Luther King Boulevard and Guadalupe Street will encourage local involvement and information exchange with the community.
For the McCombs School, the app has taken communication about the project to the broader community and brought excitement to new levels. Equally important, it has added another dimension to the already successful collaboration between Ennead and its client. McCombs sees the value of working with a firm that helps to create a vision for a major facility and then delivers a way to explain the process, communicate the vision and provides tools to help raise money for it.
“Architecture has always been about inventiveness, and we created an interactive app to help UT express its vision and mission in a very tangible and visual way,” says Alex O’Briant, associate partner at Ennead Architects.
The app, developed in-house in roughly two months by Ennead designers Aleks Dawson and Margarita Calero with valuable input from UT, has received a lot of attention and interest – it’s even being used at the groundbreaking ceremony on November 7, 2014, to build enthusiasm for the kick-off of the construction phase. With beautiful renderings, as well as animations and audio, the app is proving to be a successful way to engage multiple constituents, including donors. Sustaining momentum for fundraising is an especially important factor now, because UT’s development efforts have gone beyond focusing on single, larger donors to reaching a broader audience of contributors.
“Rowling Hall wouldn’t be a reality without engaged alumni, corporate sponsors, students and parents,” says Eric Hirst, Dean of Graduate Programs at the McCombs School. “Reaching these audiences and telling our story in compelling and varied ways is a top priority. The iPad app is one of the best possible ways to invite audiences into the fascinating details of the project.” Having broken new ground with its first DPS app, Ennead Architects wants to tap the potential for future apps. Working with public and institutional clients who have a variety of stakeholders, Ennead sees DPS apps as powerful communication tools that can make a genuine difference and help clients show and tell the world about their new building projects.