BAC NOMAS Goes to Atlanta :: Day 1

BAC NOMAS Heads to Atlanta

by Christopher McIntosh, Vice President, BAC NOMAS

Four BAC students are representing the BAC in Atlanta, GA this weekend for the NOMA Student Design Competition. The team attending are the following BAC students: Jahim Baskerville, Delia Gott, David Hansen, and Chris McIntosh. I will be posting periodic updates from Georgia.

Welcome to Atlanta! We heard of southern hospitality, but we certainly were NOT ready for weather colder than Boston. Undeterred, we will continue to trudge along through the cold and enjoy every minute of our stay here.  As we experience everything that NOMA and the city of Atlanta has to offer, we’ll try to bring you a little taste of our experiences and travels.

As we turned loose upon the city, we were encouraged by the quality, smoothness and ease of the MARTA (Metropolitan Atlanta Rapid Transit Authority) train system. Boston’s got a few things to learn about train comfort and ride quality. It was a sign of things to come as Atlanta would soon surprise us with the quality of design that is waiting to be discovered here.

After checking in to the hotel and settling in, our first adventure took us to Buckhead, a growing neighborhood north of downtown Atlanta. A lot of Atlanta’s growth can be seen in the gleaming steel and glass structures that populated Peachtree Street. As we exited the station, the amazement hit us at every angle – beautifully soaring structures, like the Fifth Third Bank building, captured the reflections of everything around them. The clean and sharp angles really give the city a polished appearance that screams high class.

Our next surprise of the day was Market Restaurant at the W Hotel. The striking contrasts of material and scale created a welcoming facade for what we would see inside. Being blown away doesn't begin to describe how impressed we were with the crisp and bright interior design work, done by Karim Rashid. The warmth and deep colors definitely made us feel good on this cold day. Amazed and ready for more, we continued on our way.

The next adventure of discovery took us across the street from our hotel, through a series of linked walkways, known as the Skywalk.  These exterior corridors connect pedestrians to many of the major hotels downtown without having to step outside, similar to the bridge connecting the Prudential Center and Copley Place. This extensive network stretched over several city blocks, leading us into the lobbies of the Marriott and Hilton hotels.

Exiting the Skybridge, once again, amazement hit us as we walked into the lobby of the Marriott.  The combination of the scale of the interior, the stacked design of the floors, the crazy heights, the shapes, the lights, the colors… Everything about this space was well thought out and cleanly placed. The remarkable structure continued to enhance to the good impression Atlanta is putting on us, and we really haven’t scratched the surface of the exciting sights.

As this was only Day 1 of our trip, the real fun is yet to begin as the conference gets underway.  We are really excited to interact, learn and experience everything we can.  We will be checking in regularly, so stay tuned for more of the fun!