Author Archives: jenkins peer

Diller Scofidio + Renfro and Jenkins•Peer selected to masterplan Discovery Place Science

Charlotte, NC – Discovery Place and the City of Charlotte today announced the selection of the architectural team that will lead the analysis, planning and design of a new vision for Discovery Place Science in uptown Charlotte. The announcement follows last night’s approval by Charlotte City Council of the architectural contract. New York-based Diller Scofidio + Renfro (DS+R) will serve as design architect and will partner with Charlotte firm Jenkins•Peer Architects (J•PA) who will act as architect of record. Together the firms will oversee a team that will create a master plan and conceptual design to imagine the future of one of the Carolinas’ premiere cultural attractions.

Discovery Place Science, which first opened its doors on North Tryon Street in 1981, is a four-acre catalyst site in the North Tryon Vision Plan, an innovative vision to redevelop and re-energize the northern corridor of Tryon St. The plan was adopted by the City of Charlotte earlier this year. The new master plan will consider how a reconfigured and upgraded Discovery Place Science will interact with a new streetscape as well as service the growing need for STEM education in the region.

The DS+R and J•PA team will lead a process that will include workshops to engage the community and key stakeholders; an analysis of trends and models in science centers; an overview of experiential design concepts; an evaluation of the current Discovery Place Science campus; and an assessment of future needs and opportunities. Ultimately, the architect group will develop an inspiring conceptual design for the facility that will communicate the Museum’s mission to provide the community with educational and immersive opportunities in science, technology and nature.

DS+R completed two of the largest architecture and planning initiatives in New York City’s recent history: the adaptive reuse of an obsolete, industrial rail infrastructure into the High Line, a 1.5 mile-long public park, and the transformation of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts’ half-century-old campus. Amongst the firm’s cultural projects are the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston and The Broad, a contemporary art museum key to downtown LA’s recent revitalization. J•PA brings an impressive depth of experience in projects throughout the Carolinas and elsewhere with a special expertise in working with public sector clients. The firm has led multiple planning projects for the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Library system as well as the Jerry Richardson Stadium & Judy Rose Football Center at UNC Charlotte.

“DS+R is one of the world’s leading architectural design firms, well-known for their urban place-making as well as major civic and cultural buildings and campuses,” said Catherine Wilson Horne, president and CEO, Discovery Place. “We believe they bring a global perspective that will help define the North Tryon district as Charlotte’s center where curiosity begins, knowledge is advanced and innovation lives. We are delighted to partner with them and can’t wait to begin imagining new ways for our community to experience science.”

Discovery Place Science’s master planning process is anticipated to kick off in January and is expected to be completed in late 2018.


About Discovery Place

One of the top hands-on science museums in the nation, Discovery Place provides ever-changing, entertaining facilities that engage people in the active exploration of science, technology and nature. Discovery Place is a 501c3 nonprofit that provides STEM education to the Carolinas through four distinct museum experiences at Discovery Place Science, Discovery Place Nature and Discovery Place Kids, interactive educational programming, professional development training and community outreach initiatives. In 2017, Discovery Place was named as a finalist for the National Medal by the Institute for Museum and Library Science.

For more information about Discovery Place, call 704.372.6261 x300, visit or connect with Discovery Place Science on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

Discovery Place is supported, in part, with funding from the Arts & Science Council.


About Diller Scofidio+ Renfro

Founded in 1981, Diller Scofidio + Renfro (DS+R) is a design studio whose practice spans the fields of architecture, urban design, installation art, multi-media performance, digital media, and print. With a focus on cultural and civic projects, DS+R’s work addresses the changing role of institutions and the future of cities.  The studio is based in New York and is comprised of over 100 architects, designers, artists and researchers, led by four partners—Elizabeth Diller, Ricardo Scofidio, Charles Renfro and Benjamin Gilmartin.  The studio is currently engaged in two significant cultural projects in New York: The Shed, New York’s first multi-arts center, and the renovation and expansion of the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA). The studio was also selected to design the Centre for Music, which will be a permanent home for the London Symphony Orchestra located at the heart of London’s Culture Mile. Recent projects include the 34-acre Zaryadye Park, the first large scale park to open in Moscow in the past 50 years; the Museum of Image & Sound on Copacabana Beach in Rio de Janeiro; the Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive at the University of California, Berkeley; the Roy and Diana Vagelos Education Center at Columbia University in New York; and The Juilliard School in Tianjin, China. DS+R’s awards include the Smithsonian Institution’s National Design Award and Wall Street Journal Magazine’s Architecture Innovators Award. Founding partners Ricardo Scofidio and Elizabeth Diller were recognized as two of the “100 Most Influential People in the World” by Time Magazine, and were the first in the field of architecture to receive the “genius grant” from the MacArthur Foundation. Visit to learn more, or follow us on instagram (@diller_scofidio_renfro) and on twitter (@dsrny).


About Jenkins•Peer

Since the Charlotte-based firm was established in 1978, J•PA has directed its efforts toward delivering integrated design solutions that influence how people live, learn, work, and play.  This commitment is based on a highly collaborative approach that brings together the knowledge, talent, and resources to address client objectives and enhance our communities. J•PA’s ability to manage the planning and design process, guide informative discussions, and achieve consensus has been a key factor in the firm’s ability to maintain lasting client relationships and deliver dynamic projects that build community. Visit to learn more, or follow us on instagram (@jenkinspeerarchitects), LinkedIn, and Facebook.

Design is underway on the Charles R. Jonas Federal Courthouse and Annex in Charlotte, NC

August 17, 2017

Work has begun on the renovation and restoration of Charlotte’s historic Charles R. Jonas Federal Courthouse (ca. 1915), preserving the character and architectural details of the original structure and upgrading building systems throughout. In addition to the 134,400-sf renovation, an adjoining 198,000-sf Annex is being designed to meet the long-term space needs of the Courts, while addressing security and circulation deficiencies within the existing facility.

Combined, the renovation and addition will provide a total of ten courtrooms: three District, two Senior District, one District Special Proceedings, two Magistrate, and two Bankruptcy courtrooms. Additionally, space will be provided for the US Circuit, District, and Magistrate Courts; US Marshals Service; US Probation Office; US Public Defenders; US Attorney’s Office; and the GSA’s Public Buildings Service.

As Architect-of-Record, Charlotte-based Jenkins•Peer Architects is directing the design effort with a team including Robert A.M. Stern Architects, noted for their ability to create distinctive public buildings that establish a strong civic presence, and Ricci Greene Architects, the nation’s premier courts planning and design firm. The project is being administered by the US General Services Administration.

The work will be accomplished in phases, with the new Annex scheduled for completion in Fall 2020 followed by completion of the existing courthouse renovation in Fall 2022. The completed complex will serve as an anchor for revitalization and future development in Charlotte’s Central Business District, with a design that reflects the dignity, ideals, and stability of the Federal Government.

UNC Charlotte’s New University Recreation Center moves into construction

June 22, 2017

Construction begins in July 2017 on UNC Charlotte’s new University Recreation Center.  The 148,000-sf facility is designed to meet the University’s immediate needs, while providing the flexibility to adapt and expand components as desired in the future. Jenkins•Peer Architects is working with CannonDesign to address program components including:

  • Administrative Offices, Wellness Center, and Consultation Rooms
  • Four-Court and Two-Court Gymnasiums
  • Multi-Activity Court (MAC) Gymnasium
  • Elevated Jogging Track
  • Cardio and Free Weight Training Room
  • Rock Climbing Wall
  • Indoor Pool
  • Outdoor Leisure Pool
  • Multipurpose Group Fitness Rooms
  • Racquetball Courts
  • Squash Courts
  • Outdoor Resource Center
  • Locker Rooms & Support Spaces
  • Equipment Storage
  • Core & Circulation

The facility’s architecture is consistent with the established style of the surrounding campus. By incorporating more glazing, the design’s transparency  establishes the building as a recreation center and sets it apart from the adjacent academic buildings. The Rec Center is  scheduled to open in Summer 2019.

Revitalizing Rebekah: Work Continues at Agnes Scott College

June 21, 2017

Site work and interior demolition are underway, signaling the start of the comprehensive renovation of Rebekah Scott Hall. This 110-year old campus landmark is being revitalized and modernized with a design that celebrates and enhances its great spaces, preserves its beautiful historic character, and improves comfort and access for all of Agnes Scott College’s staff and students. When complete, the first floor will become the ‘front door’ to the College, welcoming visitors and prospective students to campus. The space will feature an inviting lobby and gallery area showcasing SUMMIT, a program focusing on global learning and women’s leadership development. Offices for admissions, enrollment, and financial aid will also be housed on the first floor, while student residences on the second and third floors will be renovated and revitalized with amenities that meet the expectations of today’s students.

All new mechanical, plumbing, and electrical systems will improve operational efficiency and enhance the comfort of the staff and students who work and live in Rebekah Hall, while contributing to the facility’s anticipated LEED Silver certification. An adjacent surface parking lot will be replaced with a geothermal system to keep Rebekah cool, even during hot Atlanta summers.

Jenkins•Peer Architects began working with the College in 2014, developing the design in two phases to align with Agnes Scott’s “The Greatness Before Us” capital campaign. The first phase of the renovation, completed in 2015, addressed exterior features in need of immediate repair and stabilization: restoring and repairing the building’s cupola and woodwork, repointing bricks, and installing new gutters and downspouts. The second phase of the renovation is scheduled for completion in Summer 2018. Agnes Scott’s vigorous fund-raising campaign has been widely supported by donors who support the College’s mission “to educate women to think deeply, live honorably, and engage the intellectual and social challenges of their times.”

Jenkins-Peer is on the Team looking at ways to improve Charlotte’s Memorial Stadium

February 2, 2016

Memorial redevelopment on the agenda
by Erik Spanberg, Charlotte Business Journal

Kick this idea around: Are city and county leaders ready to provide a big assist for a $20 million renovation of Memorial Stadium? Expect to hear that debate heat up in the next few months.

The discussion, anticipated since the minor league Charlotte Independence debuted last year in a temporary home at Ramblewood Soccer Complex, is considered vital if boosters are serious about pursuing a Major League Soccer franchise within the next five years. City and county politicians and administrators have expressed interest, but have yet to discuss specific proposals or possible taxpayer contributions.

Jim McPhilliamy, Independence managing partner, told me this week the team has been looking at stadium possibilities and studying the issue. He said the team will defer to city and county leaders about whether and how a collaboration could work.

Deputy city manager Ron Kimble, tourism executive Tom Murray and Charlotte Center City Partners CEO Michael Smith among them — to push for exhibition matches at Bank of America Stadium and to discuss soccer as a magnet for millennials and international business connections. Last summer, a pair of exhibitions featuring international teams brought more than 50,000 fans to the NFL stadium twice in a 10-day span.

“If we can make an investment in Memorial Stadium and show the MLS that we can support soccer, our track record in sports is good,” James Mitchell, a Democrat who leads the City Council economic development committee, told me. “I think there is political will to get this done. So you can check that box off. The question is whether there is enough sponsorship support at a major league level to go with the Hornets, the Panthers and NASCAR.”

The NFL Panthers are the strongest, healthiest sports property in the region. After a decade of struggle, the NBA Hornets have rebounded and become a consistently profitable business. Charlotte Motor Speedway and the annual PGA Tour stop at Quail Hollow are also stable, reliable attractions.

Mitchell told me council members will likely at least mention the idea of exploring soccer — and Memorial Stadium — during their annual retreat in Winston-Salem. The retreat starts Wednesday and ends Friday.

Mecklenburg County owns Memorial Stadium, an 80-year-old building that needs extensive repairs even to serve as home of a minor league team, never mind an MLS franchise. Even so, its history and proximity to uptown could make for an appealing MLS home, McPhilliamy and other boosters have said.

Local firm Jenkins-Peer Architects has presented the team with a renovation plan that would take 16 months, make the field soccer-ready and put capacity at 10,000. The blueprint calls for using the makeover as a base that could be expanded to 20,000 seats if and when an MLS team arrives. Jenkins-Peer designed Jerry Richardson Stadium for the Charlotte 49ers, a 15,000-seat venue that can be expanded to 40,000 seats.

McPhilliamy views Sacramento and San Antonio as top competitors for MLS. The league has 20 teams and commitments to add four more during the next few years. Last year, the MLS disclosed plans to push the franchise count to 28 — though how soon has yet to be determined. Previously, the MLS had set 2020 as a target date for going to 24 clubs.

Atlanta’s expansion team will join in 2017 and a second Los Angeles franchise begins play the following year. Minnesota and Miami are poised to become the 23rd and 24th franchises soon after that.

“I think Charlotte’s a viable MLS market,” Sal Galatioto, president of a New York sports-finance firm, told me. Galatioto helped Bob Johnson in his successful bid for the NBA expansion team that became the Charlotte Bobcats and later helped Johnson sell majority interest to current owner Michael Jordan. (Jordan changed the name to Hornets from Bobcats in 2014.)

MLS spokesman Dan Courtemanche said, “The success of soccer in Charlotte at the youth and college level serves as yet another strong indicator of the continued growth of the sport in the United States. Last summer’s CONCACAF Gold Cup crowd of more than 55,000 also illustrated the passionate support for soccer in the area. Independence owner Jim McPhilliamy provides us with regular updates regarding the progress of professional soccer in Charlotte, and we understand the city and the county are very supportive of his vision for a soccer-specific stadium that could be the home for a Major League Soccer expansion team someday.”

An expansion team will likely cost $100 million or more and McPhilliamy has said he will need deep-pockets investors to pay for an expansion franchise.

For now, the best-case scenario is for McPhilliamy and city and county government to begin formal talks and figure out how to pay for the stadium renovations. The Independence face at least two more seasons at Ramblewood, where another local design firm, Odell Associates, is helping expand the temporary facility opened last season.

The Independence starts the 2016 season March 26 at home against Louisville.

Erik Spanberg covers government, sports business, hospitality and airlines for the Charlot

Sherrills Ford-Terrell Branch Library earns recognition

December 4, 2015

The North Carolina Public Library Directors Association (NCPLDA) has recognized the Catawba County Library System with its New or Improved Facility Award for the recently completed 10,000 square-foot Sherrills Ford-Terrell Branch Library. The community’s original branch library was built in 1980 and expanded in 1990; however, with just 2,675 square feet of space and a service area that was expected to grow by 30% by 2018, the community needed a larger facility. The new state-of-the-art branch addresses the immediate and future needs of this growing community with architecture, public spaces, and furnishings to enhance services for this growing part of the county.

The building was designed by Jenkins-Peer Architects, with significant community input into the planning for the design. Interior design for the Sherrills Ford-Terrell Library drew inspiration from the natural beauty of Catawba County and nearby Lake Norman, with a setting appealing to all age groups and timeless in its design. Natural light was a key aspect of the overall interior design, with clerestory windows to allow for natural light to “filter” into the space at all times of the day.

With a small footprint, the space is enhanced by an open and inviting interior with visibility from one side of the building to the other. Additionally, much of the shelving is low and moveable, for space versatility. The majority of the furnishings are also on wheels to allow the staff to move the furniture as needs change, and providing for utmost future flexibility.

Sustainable design principles including optimizing natural light, locally sourced building materials and furniture, high-efficiency HVAC, and reduced water consumption are incorporated throughout the facility, which is registered with the US Green Building Council and is pursuing LEED Silver Certification.
Library Director Suzanne White noted, “We are delighted to be recognized. Our new branch at Sherrills Ford-Terrell creates a contemporary, light-filled environment filled with inviting collaborative spaces throughout. The community has embraced it wholeheartedly. Importantly, too, the branch exemplifies our mission to help empower lives and build community by bringing people, information, and ideas together.”

UNC Pembroke’s Entrepreneurship Incubator opens for business

November 24, 2015

With its new offices ready for occupancy, UNC Pembroke’s Entrepreneurship Incubator (EI) is ready to serve start-up businesses in the region.

The incubator has been conceived as an engine for job creation and innovation for the 10-county region extending from the coast to the sandhills. The project was funded by $1.2 million in grants and gifts from the U.S. Commerce Department, the Golden Leaf Foundation, and private donors.

The 17,000 square-foot facility supports local entrepreneurs by providing new businesses with physical space, consulting services, educational seminars and workshops, mentoring, and networking opportunities.

The incubator itself has been a business start-up of entrepreneurial proportions, said Dr. Cammie Hunt, associate vice chancellor for Engaged Outreach.

UNCP’s incubator draws from the resources of North Carolina’s Small Business and Technology Development Center (SBTDC), UNCP’s Thomas Family Center for Entrepreneurship and the School of Business. The EI also has formed strategic partnerships with InnovateNC, headquartered at NC State University, and NCGrowth at UNC Chapel Hill.

“It took state, federal and community support to get to this day, and we are very excited about opening the doors of this beautiful facility to facilitate businesses’ success,” Dr. Hunt said. “The Entrepreneurship Incubator will be a significant job creator for the region.”