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Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate

Value ($)
Size (SF)
Rafael Vinoly Architects
Project duration
09/01/2011 – 12/25/2013

Project Facts

  • 70,000 square-foot museum, exhibit and office space
  • Building includes an exact replica of the U.S. Senate Chamber gallery; lobby with senate exhibits; classrooms; library/ research area; archival storage; gift shop; cafe; office space and a replica of the late Senator’s office


  • Budget: Extensive, detailed preconstruction process began in Schematic Design. Team performed multiple reviews at each stage of design from both a budget and constructability perspective. Full cost reconciliation with an independent estimator was performed at all stages
  • Value Management: Coordinated a value management and “wants vs. needs” scope evaluation utilizing our knowledge of the site conditions to provide a cost plan that balanced design and budget. A few results included:

Removing the building’s basement, a significant cost and schedule saver. Having worked at the directly adjacent JFK Presidential Library, the team knew the soil conditions and the high cost associated with removing contaminated soils from the site

A break out cost analysis on the relocation of the JFK building chiller, which resulted in a more cost effective location. 3. Evaluation of over 50 value management and cost reduction items that resulted in over $10M of potential savings.

  • Design Assist: LKCo. managed the process of prequalification, RFP solicitation and procurement to bring the most qualified and cost effective subcontractors on board. Worked with the Owners Representative, architect and subcontractors in a design-assist capacity on multiple exterior wall panel options to align the design intent with the budget. Options included cost and constructability analysis on 28’ long seamless and seamed FRP panels, FRP grating and metal panel façade components. Also provided cost analysis on unitized vs. stick built construction and significant study on ‘R’ value, acoustical criteria and structural coordination
  • Senate Chamber: Worked with design team and owners representative to provide a break out analysis and pricing on numerous custom components of the Representation of the Capitol Senate Chamber in Washington DC. Components included decorative plaster, GFRG, Faux Marble, Faux Painting, Trompe-l’œil Imagery and Historic Elements such as the Senate Tables, Desks, Chairs, Rostrums and Architraves, Doors, Sculpture Niches, Oculus, Acoustical Dome and Skylight
  • Early Packages: Procured early packages for sitework, PIFs, concrete, steel, precast panels and waterproofing to ensure that construction started as mandated


  • Fast-track schedule
  • Tight project site abuts John F. Kennedy Library, UMass Boston and MWRA
  • Building site is a capped landfill; team installed operating vapor mitigation system to prepare site for construction
  • Foundation required 541 PIFs with deep below grade elements


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