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Architecture and Urban Planning

Schematic design approved for new U-M dance building

Hayley Tibbenham as Alice in Inhuman. Photo by director of photography Joshua Knoller.

ANN ARBOR—A year ago, the University of Michigan Board of Regents approved plans for a $19 million building for the Department of Dance at the School of Music, Theatre & Dance—its first dedicated facility in a storied 110-year history.

Those plans continue to move forward, as the Board of Regents on Thursday approved the schematic design for the building.

The project will expand the Department of Dance with the construction of a new 24,000-square-foot space on North Campus, which more than doubles the square footage of existing space utilized by the department. It will be built adjacent to the Brehm Pavilion at the Earl V. Moore Building, and will include a performance venue with seating for 100 people, dance studios and locker rooms, as well as administrative space.

“The new facility will invigorate and highlight dance at Michigan,” said David Gier, dean of the School of Music, Theatre & Dance. “We expect this new space will bring our creative community together and unleash some really exciting cross-disciplinary activity.”

The new building will boast four large, flexible studio-classroom spaces that will accommodate approximately 76 dance majors and more than 800 other students who utilize its studios each year.

“This new studio will provide a state-of-the-art teaching environment, complete with technology that has become standard in the teaching and choreographing of dance, such as computers, video cameras and monitors,” Gier said. “It is an investment in our current faculty and students, and will enhance recruitment of the most talented dancers, teachers and scholars of dance in the country.”

The project will be funded by SMTD gifts and resources and investment proceeds.

Bloomfield Hills architectural firm TMP Architecture Inc. designed the project, which is expected to provide an average of 27 on-site construction jobs. Construction is expected to be completed in spring 2021.

The Board of Regents also authorized issuing bids and awarding construction contracts for the project.

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