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Design Students Display Drawings

Contact: George Lewis

Photo of UK School of Architecture Professor Greg Luhan cradles his daughter Miller as he describes the nuances contained in the renderings of UK buildings.
UK School of Architecture Professor Greg Luhan cradles his daughter Miller as he describes the nuances contained in the renderings of UK buildings.

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“The information being collected for this project will also impact historic preservation beyond the campus. The project will serve as a prototype for surveying, documenting and visualizing architecture and establish a framework for database management and organization of all historic structures throughout the Commonwealth.”

-- Patrick Thrush,
CHAP Project Planning and Technology Director

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June 3, 2003 (Lexington, Ky.) -- Students in the University of Kentucky School of Architecture within the College of Design are building on the past to help UK plan for the future, while preserving its historical integrity.

Using the campus as a classroom, the students of architecture professor Gregory Luhan are integrating standards set by the Library of Congress and the Historic American Buildings Survey to survey, document and photograph buildings and landscapes and create computer visualizations of their findings.

Their aim is to digitize historic data and from it generate an interactive and searchable three-dimensional model and comprehensive database of the campus using a rapid-prototyping process called stereo lithography.

The uses of this database are virtually unlimited, Luhan said. The university could use this material to better determine where expansion should take place, to create a marketing tool that allows potential students see inside dorms and classrooms via the World Wide Web, and to enable various university departments to more efficiently track and plan tasks such as classroom scheduling and building renovation, he said.

“Ultimately, this project will be a valuable resource tool and provide a service to the university,” Luhan said.

The students’ progress can be seen in the exhibition envisioning UK on display through June at the UK Center for Historic Architecture and Preservation (CHAP), 218 East Main St., next to the Kentucky Theatre.

The exhibition features analysis and drawings of 45 UK buildings in panels using visualization techniques taught by Luhan in his Computing in Architecture seminar, which introduces students to the uses of digital media in architecture.

“The information being collected for this project will also impact historic preservation beyond the campus,” said Patrick Thrush, CHAP Project Planning and Technology Director. “The project will serve as a prototype for surveying, documenting and visualizing architecture and establish a framework for database management and organization of all historic structures throughout the Commonwealth.”

Luhan and CHAP Director Dennis Domer have applied for a $250,000 grant from the Getty Foundation Campus Heritage Initiative to further develop the project.


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