Boston University

Engineering Product Innovation Center

Prominently located at the heart of BU’s campus, the Engineering Product Innovation Center (EPIC) serves as the only street-view presence of Engineering from Commonwealth Avenue.

The 15,000 SF facility merges the technical education of using machine tools with the ability to bring a product to market. In the hopes of revitalizing manufacturing and engineering in the U.S., the project was sponsored by industry leaders, among them some Fortune 500 companies.

EPIC paves the way for innovative hands-on learning in the field of engineering production and manufacturing. BU is enhancing its undergraduate College of Engineering education by incorporating specialized training in modern software and technology for product development. The facility equips students beyond theoretical knowledge, by allowing them to manufacture their ideas into real-world products.

It was a top priority for BU to bring Engineering to the forefront of campus. The design team delivered this goal by making EPIC a visible gateway to the central campus from the BU Bridge as students cross campus from west to east. EPIC is not only visible, but transparent; passersby can actually see production happening within.

Located in a former guitar center and parking garage, the adaptive reuse project provides floor space for an open machine shop with metal lathes, CNC, milling machines, 3D printers, and a variety of other tools. Adjacent, a teaching and assembly area allow students to work in teams and collaborate on projects. A metrology lab lets students test and measure the hardness and character of materials; and a welding and kiln area serves to mold materials into any desired shape.

EPIC originally included 4,000 SF of shell space for research that has recently been fit-up for the BU Robotics Lab. The lab is a perfect partner for EPIC, promoting a hands-on research environment. Included are a robot arena, workshop, desk seating for 28, a 12-person conference room, informal gathering area and kitchenette.


Boston, Massachusetts

Building Type

Research Labs, Teaching Labs, Machine Shop, Classroom, Meeting Space, Office


15,000 SF

  • 2016, SCUP/AIA-CAE Excellence in Architecture for Building Additions, Honorable Mention

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