Visiting Ancient Roma




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The arch of Constantine, it’s 1700 years old. There is a lump in my throat as my small feet move, my legs stretch to step along the 1′ square stones, marking the ancient Roman road. The stones are glossy after all of the rain. We are in the forum, a place we can walk around.

Most of Rome’s ruins are below the street, to the enjoyment of my companion. She is from Mexico City, and this ancient city reminds her of Aztec ruins, temples and pyramids hidden below the modern city she knows.

The Pantheon doors don’t tell you about what’s about to happen. My soul is taken, uplifted below the moon disk looming, hovering, suspended and heavy am I, just left standing and staring until someone comes along to accidently brush my shoulder. The Pantheon is even older, built 1900 years ago, remaining as a backdrop to the many movements of people, for a new history.
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Architectural Trips ~ A Italia

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Gloss-lipped sun, over the road that carries morning back to Italy. I love going to a place that’s in my blood. The rays lay down, everyone else moving with me is pale and excited.

Once in the air, we fly along with the barrier islands of the states before heading eastward.

Once in Rome we enter the city through one of the fourteen gates, and bow down before the sunken oval entrance. A mosaic of Jesus greets us, and then we are allowed to sleep.

It isn’t long before we need to draw the Colosseum. The historic mass that takes up the end of a city block. The figure that is recalled so easily in the mind, stands before me in a way that pushes back.

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Time for Coffee – Morgantown Marriott

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It’s always difficult to finish. It’s even more difficult to finish a project as large (70,000 sf), out of masonry and through two winters in a little over a year! The Grand Opening party is scheduled for June, but the hotel will open its doors before that. The contractors who have seen that every joint is caulked, ever louver installed, and that each fan is drawing the required air, have been a blessing to the architect. I am thankful that each member of the team cared as much about providing the owners and the Marriott brand with a hotel that is of the utmost quality. Not only were things finished the right way, but they were finished the best way. Thank you, thank you. Come and visit the hotel for yourself soon!

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Pretty at Punch

Look at the hotel now! A year ago today the Marriott site looked like this:

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The drawings weren’t even complete. They looked like this, without bathrooms in the guest rooms, because we were determining the pod geometry with Oldcastle.

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The first week of March 2015 was spent preparing specifications and the Marriott Courtyard prototype drawings for compliance, selecting finishes and fixtures from the options and coordinating those with our MEP trades. Structural coordination and structural detailing went on simultaneously. Mills Group had the fortunate experience of working with great owners, West Place LLC. Throughout the project we coordinated with A LOT of consultants including: the general contractor, Waller Corporation,  Oldcastle for bathroom pods,  our MEP and Structural consultants at Allegheny Design Services, Cheat Road Engineering for the site, Marriott of course, Mack Industries who provided our precast floor plans, Concrete Fabricators on the stairs and small details surrounding the outside, Fairfield Landscaping, Gilliana Pools, REDI Kitchen Consultants, Mongiovi, Morgantown Security and Fire, and Schindler to name a few. On the sub-contractor side, Elk Electric, Pine Hollow Mechanical, Inc., JMJ who built the cabinetry and Daniel W’s FF&E team who installed it have all worked alongside Waller’s tireless team to be where we are today with a space that is finishing beautifully.

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Our architectural firm uses many technologies to complete our work. Revit was used to draft this project during the production drawing phase and during our most recent punch list efforts we’ve used Blue Beam Revu. More on that program to come. For now, enjoy the final few stages of construction and FF&E setup as the Mills Group team sees the progress during the punch list process. Enjoy the images below!

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And then, two weeks later, photos by Mariah:

 

Pull back the Curtain

…And welcome Morgantown’s new Marriott. The project that has been on my desk for about two years is going to be finished in the next couple of months.

I visited the site this week and enjoyed recognizing all of the finishing details as the guestrooms near completion from the fifth floor down.

The fire pit in the back has been bricked awaiting the surrounding patio to be poured in the next week. The landscaping is in, as this week provided sunshine and some warmer temperatures. The EIFS contractors are working beneath a heated tent to finish the rear of the building, offering a finished face to the view. The flags will soon be hoisted on the recently installed poles, celebrating our nation, WVU and the adjacent Black Bears Baseball team. I can’t wait!

 

Marriott Update December 2015

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Foundations began less than a year ago for the Morgantown Courtyard by Marriott, and now a few months before opening, the building is standing with a real presence.

IMG_0180Mills Group made it on OldCastle’s blog recently for this project in Morgantown! Check it out here.IMG_0133 IMG_0127December has been unseasonably warm. As of today concrete and asphalt surround the building awaiting the winter opening. Winter sod will be installed soon as the finishing touches from floor five down are complete. At the start of December I walked the building with my colleague and we marveled as we watched sixty drywall finishers, some on stilts, move through level three to mud, sand and paint the drywall. The top two floors look like white boxes awaiting their finishes. Soon the Marriott Sign will arrive, and the building will have a name to the public. The collage of photos below were taken by Waller Construction.