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WSDG Designs Fully Immersive Integrated Media Complex

TROY, NY: Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), the world’s 3rd highest ranked research university, has commissioned WSDG Walters-Storyk Design Group to design and oversee the construction of a fully immersive audio/video/ 3D production, mixing and editing complex for their Troy, NY campus. The primary mission for this addition to Rensselaer’s Media Arts, Science & Technology Department is to advance the creation, performance and production of 3D immersive audio and video content. “RPI was founded in 1824 for the application of science to the common purposes of life, and is recognized for its degree programs in engineering, computing, business management and information technology,” states, Mary Simoni, RPI, Dean-School of Humanities, Arts & Social Sciences. “This new facility will be integral to our signature thrust, and will significantly extend connectivity to (and collaboration with)the university’s Experimental and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC), and Cognitive Immersive Systems Lab (CISL).”

“Our assignment focused on the complete renovation of the existing 1700 sq. ft. space, and the design, construction supervision and systems integration of a 1000 sq. ft. Audio Recording/Production Studio, a cutting edge 300 sq. ft. Audio Control Room, a 100 sq. ft.Iso lab, 160 sq. ft. Video Control Room and a 90 sq. ft. AV Lab,” reports WSDG Partner/Project Manager Joshua Morris. “With a 16’ ceiling height, and sufficient space for ambitious audio and video programming creation, RPI’s Immersive Production complex will provide students with a future-proofed experimentation environment. Special attention is being focused on the facility’s variable acoustic properties, to compensate for the ‘deader’ tracking environment required by Immersive production techniques,” Morris said.

“The complex will utilize ‘dark’ fiber optic connectivity previously installed between RPI’s EMPAC and DCC buildings, to allow for seamless audio/video connectivity. Advantages will include use of the EMPAC Concert Hall as a sound stage with audio/video control in the DCC and, enable a live performance at the DCC to be viewed on multiple EMPAC screens,” Morris adds.

 “I first encountered WSDG’s expertise in designing audio/video production facilities during my tenure at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor,” Dean Simoni adds. “The success of that project motivated me to recommend them to RPI.  WSDG’s credits include multifaceted installations for NYU, the Berklee College of Music (Boston and Valencia, Spain) and many other major universities. Rob Carney, Project Manager for Campus Planning & Facilities Design, Kim Osburn, Manager of Operations & Administrative Services for the School of Humanities, Arts & Social Sciences, and I have been consistently impressed with WSDG’s thinking, creative design recommendations, attention to detail and follow through.  We look forward to the timely completion of our new Immersive Production facility in January 2018.”

“WSDG’s history of developing production/teaching complexes for leading colleges and universities includes educational facilities for many major schools,” concludes founding partner, John Storyk. “Our projects range from the Berklee College of Music (Boston, Mass.& Valencia, Spain) to NYU’s Steinhardt / Dolan Music Technology Center in NYC, ESPM’s Broadcast Teaching Center in Sao Paulo, Brazil, the University of Applied Sciences in Solothurn, Switzerland, and over twenty Art Institute Teaching Centers throughout the U.S.  As an adjunct professor of acoustics and studio design I lecture frequently at the Berklee College of Music.  We are honored to have been retained by
RPI to prepare their sstudents for 21st Century audio production careers.”