Augusta University (AU) maintains three campuses (Health Sciences, Summerville, and Forest Hills) in Augusta, Georgia, the second largest city in Georgia. With a campus of approximately 150 buildings, the university is a $1 billion-plus enterprise with state-wide and national reach. Augusta University was established as a consolidation of Georgia Health Sciences University and Augusta State University in 2012, making it currently the ninth-largest medical school in the country. Post-merger AU is focusing on issues related to consolidation and moving forward as an united institution. Under a 9-university partnership with the University System of Georgia (USG), Corvias partnered with AU to design and construct a residential community serving both undergraduate and graduate students on the downtown medical campus.
As Augusta University continues to merge the three main campuses into one cohesive university, housing plays a critical role in supporting the development of a sense of community among students. Through collaboration with Augusta University, Corvias designed a unique approach to a residential area that meets the needs of a diverse student population and is committed to the use of LID and green infrastructure. The intentional placement of the new residential buildings, along with the use of community and green space, separates the individual living spaces of the graduate and medical students from that of the undergraduate students. The location is accessible for the graduate and professional students and provides the convenience of living close to their classes, labs, and clinical experiences. New freshmen are also now located on campus within walking distance to the wellness center and the health sciences student activity center.
The C-shaped buildings form distinct courtyards facing north that can be used for a variety of outdoor activities throughout the year. These spaces offer café seating and private areas for the students, all in an outdoor area shielded from the urban surroundings. Corvias believes that living and learning happens as much outdoors as indoors. Outdoor seating, shade trees,and gazebos will offer additional activity areas.
The new facilities in the heart of the urban center, will enhance students’ connections to public transit and city services, thereby providing a seamless connection between campus and city.
The design at Augusta University is influenced by the versatile urban setting of the Health Sciences campus and accommodates the new housing through the demolition of existing obsolete housing inventory. Corvias coordinated the schedule for demolition and new construction with campus leadership to ensure that housing needs were met during the construction of 724 new beds. Within the new housing undergraduate students can select from two-bedroom shared semi- suites or private suites, graduate students are offered a mixture of studio, one- bedroom, and two-bedroom apartments with kitchens to meet varying needs.
At Augusta University, a Phase I and II ESA was completed and showed the presence of lead-based paint (LBP) and asbestos-containing materials (ACM) in the five existing facilities on site which are slated for phased demolition. Corvias is remediating the hazardous materials in accordance with recommendations provided by the environmental consultant who conducted the assessment.
Corvias did not partner with Augusta University to solely build new housing they partnered with AU to build a lasting community. To Corvias building the AU community means open communication and support through our operations and maintenance (O&M) program. The Corvias O&M model goes beyond traditional O&M. Our Program provides established reserves (CR&R and Reinvestment Reserve) that take a proactive approach to assure AU’s facilities always remain in quality condition and adjust to current campus needs. With over 100,000 beds in the Corvias portfolio we are able to leverage our experience to achieve operating efficiencies and purchasing power for the University. Within our Partnership, Augusta University and Corvias have a joint governance structure, ensuring program flexibility and aligned interest. Augusta University and Corvias have a collaborative approach to roles and responsibilities creating an efficient working partnership. Corvias is unique in providing a long-term renovation and replacement plan that renovates and/or replaces all housing included in the partnership at least five times following the initial revitalization period when new improvements take place and select renovations are completed.