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The Baum Family Maker Space is a recent addition to the USC campus. Before its presence, the USC EERI Design Team did most of its construction in a cage-like addition within a parking lot on campus. It was rather cramped and dusty. But the addition of the maker space has provided a new area for design teams, equipped with tools, machinery, and clean space for work to be done. While space was competitive, the EERI team was able to snag a space within another cage-like area. Only now, we had room to grow our team, and a home base to organize our many materials and pieces.


This past week EERI was able to have its first build session with its members. With the space available, we were able to have 10 members show up to work. And with over 830 pieces to develop a 5 foot tall balsa wood high-rise, we needed all hands on deck! We laid out printed plans of each of the 19 floors, with a sheet of parchment paper on top. Then we carefully laid out the pieces to ensure they would fit together and used super glue to provide strength and stiffness. With the hands provided, we were able to get much more done in the night than I had anticipated. Fast forward to our building session this week, and you can see in the above image we had begun assembling our floors and elevations. I’m excited to continue building and see how it fares against a simulated earthquake!

Christopher Meany