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Contest launched to design MICA residence hall

The Maryland Institute College of Art is working with RTKL Associates of Baltimore to develop a conceptual design for a $20 million, 200-student residence hall on a half-acre parcel at 1601 Mount Royal Ave. to house its growing student body.

Top young designers from eight of RTKL's domestic and international offices will participate in an in-house competition over the next two months, developing designs for a mid-rise building that could open by the fall of 2006.

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The college's design guidelines call for the creation of a "visual gateway" to its midtown campus and links to the surrounding Bolton Hill neighborhood. Possible amenities in the undergraduate hall include meeting and conference facilities, a black-box performance theater, a coffeehouse and a career development center.

After the designs are submitted at the end of October, MICA will display them on its campus and consider each as the basis for construction of the residence hall, with RTKL as the architect.

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"It's unprecedented for an institution of MICA's stature to open up the design of a major component of our campus master plan to a design competition of this sort," said Maryland Institute President Fred Lazarus. "But our educational mission, and the college's thriving design culture, makes this a natural fit for us. We don't know what the outcome will be, but that's part of the excitement."


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