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Construction Starting on Building Befitting Thunderbird 4.0

September 26, 2019

Architects Start Work on Building Befitting Thunderbird 4.0

Construction begins Oct. 7 on new state-of-the-art global headquarters in downtown Phoenix 

In 2006, Arizona State University completed the first LEED Platinum building in Arizona – Biodesign Building B, at 727 E. Tyler St. in Tempe.

The building, which featured reduced water use, recycled and regionally available materials, maximized indoor air quality, and solar power generation, went on to win the nationally prestigious Build America Award from the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC) in 2007. 

In 2009, ASU enacted a Sustainable Design Policy declaring that the university is committed to leadership in sustainability education, research, operations, and outreach.  Sustainability guidelines were created for new construction and major renovations. And aggressive University-wide sustainability goals are updated, rethought, and rewritten on a regular basis. 

“All are welcome: A groundbreaking ceremony for the new Downtown Phoenix Thunderbird Global Headquarters will be on Monday, Oct. 7, between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m.” Click to tweet

Since July 2006, ASU has completed 32 certified LEED projects, which includes 53 buildings. Arizona State University is at the forefront of innovation in energy and performance in buildings. Thinking about the future of the planet has never been an empty promise at ASU. 

The university has always been determined to put these goals into action – in the classroom, as a part of interdisciplinary research projects, and in building design. As all work at ASU becomes increasingly more interdisciplinary, a primary aim in the physical structures has been to help accelerate the pace of discovery and innovation, to enhance communication and collaboration. 

And in the newest building – Thunderbird’s new global headquarters – the design will help facilitate innovative connections made by people from a variety of cultures, across borders and time zones. 

Building for the future 

As Thunderbird School of Global Management, a unit of the ASU Knowledge Enterprise, breaks ground on its new global headquarters, all eyes are on the future of the planet, but not just its environmental health. Goals for the new HQ, home base to the vast network that makes up Thunderbird students, alumni, faculty, and staff, reach beyond the environment. 

Human wellbeing is certainly intertwined with the environment. It is also dependent on global leaders who can make the most of opportunities and mitigate risks introduced by the convergence of digital, physical, and biological technologies. 

“Thunderbird’s new downtown Phoenix home will play an instrumental role in helping to advance the school’s mission of educating future-ready global leaders.’ ~ Dean Sanjeev Khargram” Click to tweet

Thunderbird Director General and Dean Sanjeev Khagram said the Thunderbird family is very excited about the planned new home base. The new home, he said, will play an instrumental role in helping to advance the school’s mission of educating future-ready global leaders who create sustainable and inclusive prosperity worldwide.

“Having a permanent global headquarters located in the heart of America’s fifth-largest and fastest-growing city allows us to provide our students with even more new educational experiences across sectors and disciplines,” Dean Khagram said. “T-birds have new opportunities to collaborate with corporate, governmental, and nonprofit organizations that have a presence in downtown Phoenix.”

As Thunderbird continues to shape its new life in downtown Phoenix, it is creating a building that will help shape Thunderbird 4.0. Thunderbird’s new global HQ will help the T-bird community embrace the Fourth Industrial Revolution. Groundbreaking for the building is Monday, Oct. 7 (details below) and it is scheduled to open in 2021. 

“As Thunderbird continues to shape its new life in downtown Phoenix, it is creating a building that will help shape Thunderbird 4.0.” Click to tweet

Of course, the new building will align with Thunderbird’s sustainability goals. It is also designed to help the Thunderbird community prepare for the future in terms of economic and social innovation. In some ways, the building is designed to take on a life of its own, to encourage learning, advance innovation, spark collaboration.

A future-forward building is only fitting for a school with the No. 1 Master's in Management as ranked by the Times Higher Education/WSJ 2019 Business Schools Report.And members of the T-bird community who spent time on Thunderbird’s original Glendale campus will be reminded of the best of the school’s past, including the ever popular Pub.

While preparing global leaders for the future and paying homage to the institution’s 75-year legacy, the most important role of Thunderbird’s new downtown Phoenix headquarters just might be this: It will be a home away from home for T-bird’s extensive global community.

Oct. 7: Groundbreaking, block party, food trucks

A groundbreaking ceremony for the new Downtown Phoenix Thunderbird Global Headquarters will be on Monday, Oct. 7, between 4 p.m. and 7 p.m. 

Promising not to be your ordinary groundbreaking, the celebration will be more of a block party, including live music and entertainment, food trucks serving international fare, and a flag ceremony. Take a 3D virtual tour of the new facility via virtual reality (VR) headsets. 

From 4:15 p.m. to 5:15 p.m., ASU President Michael M. Crow, Thunderbird Director General and Dean Sanjeev Khagram, and Phoenix Mayor Kate Gallego will welcome the attendees and share their vision for the new building.

Members of the public, supporters of ASU and Thunderbird, students, alumni, faculty and staff are invited to the event which will take place at 401 N. 1stStreet, Phoenix, on the south side of the Beus Center for Law and Society, just north of E. Polk Street between N. 1st Street and N. 2nd Street.

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