Flash Forward

DI Hub Building

Design Innovation Hub Virtual Grand Opening

DI Hub icon
After six years of planning, design and construction, the $44.5 million renovation of the former Art Building (built in 1972) into the new Design Innovation (DI) Hub was completed fall semester 2020. The adaptive reuse of the 68,000-square-foot space included full interior and exterior renovations and was designed by Domokur Architects in partnership with Bohlin Cywinski Jackson (BCJ) and constructed by Gilbane Building Company.

Kent State University students, faculty, staff and community members celebrated the DI Hub’s virtual grand opening on Nov. 12, 2020, marking a major milestone in the university’s $1 billion facilities master plan. The building serves as the central point of the Design Innovation Ecosystem, which includes “nodes” (existing makerspaces and resource laboratories) located throughout Kent State’s eight-campus system.

In a welcome video on the DI website—which includes remarks by President Diacon and other Kent State leaders, students and special guests—J.R. Campbell, executive director of Kent State’s DI Initiative, invites visitors to take a 3D virtual tour through the DI Hub, where they can explore the makerspaces, studios, laboratories, classrooms, offices, theatre/auditorium, dining facility and other spaces envisioned to support creativity and cross-disciplinary collaboration.

As of spring 2021, DI Hub Memberships will be open to faculty, students, staff and employees for access to the labs and shops, with a charge for use of equipment. Kent State alumni, community and business memberships will be available in the future.

Design Innovation StudentsDesign Innovation Student Waterjet cutterDesign Innovation Classroom

DIsh Cooking Challenge
As part of the of the DI Hub’s grand opening, three student chefs competed to prepare fall-inspired dishes from a basket of secret ingredients at the Innovation Teaching Kitchen on Nov. 17, in the Fall DIsh Cooking Challenge.

The 800-square-foot Innovation Teaching Kitchen, in the heart of the DI Hub, adds another new makerspace to the university’s DI Ecosystem. “Kitchens are ultimate makerspaces,” notes Campbell, adding that it also will support culinary classes for the Hospitality Management Program in the College of Education, Health and Human Services. The new kitchen will enable students to use the latest technology and food preparation techniques to compete in culinary competitions and collaborate with their peers.

J.R. CampbellDesign Innovation KitchenGigi Quarantan




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View the DI Hub Virtual Grand Opening.


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POSTED: Sunday, November 29, 2020 01:44 PM
UPDATED: Thursday, July 25, 2024 03:41 AM