KSU Architecture Student Recognized in National Steel Design Competition

MARIETTA, Ga. | Oct 8, 2020

Pablo Garcia
Pablo Garcia

Kennesaw State University student Pablo Garcia was recognized with high honors for his architectural prowess in a recent national steel design competition.

A fourth-year student in Kennesaw State’s Department of Architecture, Garcia received honorable mention in the 2020 American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC)/Association of Collegiate Schools of Architecture (ACSA) Steel Design Student Competition, landing among a group of students representing institutions such as Clemson University, Louisiana Tech University and the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. The competition recognizes 18 exceptional projects, in two categories, that explore a variety of design issues related to the use of steel in design and construction.

“As a third-year student at the time I submitted, I wasn’t expecting to find myself among a bunch of fourth- and fifth-year students, and even some grad students, but it was very rewarding to receive recognition and to see Kennesaw State’s name in such a respected competition,” Garcia said.

His submission, “Fusion,” was the result of a class project during his third year of KSU’s five-year Bachelor of Architecture program. Under the guidance of associate professor of architecture Christopher Welty, Garcia was challenged to design a mixed-use building located at the 14th Street bridge in Midtown Atlanta. The project proposes the fusion of bridge and building, while creating a community beacon and connecting the busy city life of Midtown and the community of West Midtown.

Pablo Garcia

“Professor Welty took a very interesting approach to this project,” Garcia said. “He had us first study bridges, which are made out of steel, and challenged us to design a structure that would span a highway. We had to find a way to support our structure with steel, and it was unlike anything I’ve tried before.”

The approach paid off, he added, as the judges were impressed by unique application of steel, leading to his selection as one of just six for honorable mention in the Open category.

“Though we had to work through the abnormality of this past spring, it was clear in the studio course that Pablo is a very passionate designer and devoted to learning and growing,” Welty said. “His work is well deserving of praise.”

A native of Marietta, Garcia has spent most of his life around construction. He credits working alongside his father, a framer, as his inspiration in pursuing an architecture degree in KSU’s College of Architecture and Construction Management. Upon graduation, he hopes to begin work in a professional design firm.

– Travis Highfield

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A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its more than 45,000 students. Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia with 11 academic colleges. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 7 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit kennesaw.edu.