The Aula Magna of UTN Buenos Aires was re-opened in front of a full auditorium

The Infrastructure and Planning Area team provided details of the works conducted in the historic room.

Publicada el 8 de febrero de 2018

The Aula Magna of UTN Buenos Aires was reopened on Wednesday July 7 in an exciting event in which all the technological community of the School were present. The event was also attended by the following authorities: Lic. Agustín Campero, Secretary of Scientific-Technological Articulation of the Argentine Ministry of Science, Technology and Productive Innovation; Eng. Juan José Castelucci, Rector of Universidad Nacional de Tierra del Fuego, Antártida e Islas del Atlántico Sur; Eng. Marcelo Zanitti, Dean of the School of Engineering of Universidad del Salvador; Dr. Walter Legnani, Secretary of Science, Technology and Graduate Studies at UTN; Eng. Patricia Brotto, in charge of the Rectorate’s General Office of University Construction and Planning; Eng. Andrés Bursztyn, UTN’s Secretary of Information and Communication Technologies, Vice Dean of UTN Buenos Aires and Head of the Information Systems Department at UTNBA. Eng. Héctor Brotto, UTN’s Rector, sent his greetings and congratulations.

The event, in which Jorge Formento served as the announcer, started with a speech by the Dean, Eng. Guillermo Oliveto.

Then, a video summarizing the work performed on the historic auditorium was shown and, following that, UTN Buenos Aires’s Choir and Camerata offered a brief performance.

After this, Juan Tiribelli, General Secretary of the School, referred to the path followed: “Today is a day of great joy. We started our administration on 21 December 2009 with a School project, and with a building enhancement project for this School. When we started, we couldn’t carry out these works because there were others which were delayed, such as the roof of the Medrano premises, the new works to restore the gas service (it had been cut off shortly after we took office), and the replacement of the electrical panel, which caught fire because it was not prepared to withstand the amount of activity being conducted. Those are works for which there are no big openings, they are a standard practice, like having power or internet. Little by little, we improved not only the Medrano building but also the Campus premises. We gained confidence, we settled. We were helped by Eng. Brotto, who was always willing to help and collaborated with the area. We learned a lot, and got our inspiration from the Infrastructure area of the University Rectorate.”

Tiribelli called the Infrastructure and Planning Area team to the stage: Eng. Nestor Ferré, in charge of the area; architects Paula Botti, Lucila Vidal and Rocío Lara; and engineering students Gabriel Rodríguez, Sergio Catalusci and Agustín Cuesta, who provided details of the works performed to the audience.

UTNBA’s General Secretary stressed that “this idea of incorporating students has been implemented in other areas too, such as the Information and Communication Technology Undersecretary Office, SUBTIC, which allows us to train students in areas related to their field of study.”

“When I was invited to lead this team, I knew it would be a great challenge and that we could guarantee work results and commit ourselves, -Ferré stated-. What I didn’t know was what it feels like to unveil a construction work in our own institution. It was a very exciting day, very atypical for everyone. For us, this event is a breaking point. We found a space to develop as professionals, we have the support and trust of the whole School and we will always be grateful for that. We were able to plan and set objectives, and we are slowly meeting them.”

The Infrastructure and Planning Area team provided details of the refurbishment and reconditioning works performed on the ground floor of the historic Medrano building: the space assigned to the Secretary of Science, Technology and Productive Innovation was modified; restrooms were installed both in the Lavalle and the Tucumán wings; and new access points were added. The central hall was remodeled, as well as the stairs, which were refurbished with new marble pieces. The original drawing design of the floors in the central hall was kept, and it was unified with the hallways and the restrooms; also, a control console was installed to control all the lighting system of the ground floor. In addition, emergency lights were installed in the ledges around the central hall. The bronze appliqués and the historic plates were refurbished. The furniture of the entrance counter and security area was replaced and relocated to make evacuation easier in case of an emergency.

A new modern air conditioning system was installed in the Aula Magna, capable of heating or cooling the room at its maximum capacity. The lighting system was also renewed, included embedded LED technology with an operating life of 50,000 hours (thus duplicating any traditional LED lighting system). Before, there were 200 lux and today that number went up to 450. The entire lighting system can be very flexibly handled: there is a central control room, but there are also button panels in various points in the Aula Magna and also applications to regulate lighting from a mobile phone or a tablet. In relation to the video and sound system, projects and studies were conducted showing the reverberation of the Aula Magna due to its materials (floors, curtains, glasses and walls). Two loudspeakers were placed at each side of the main window, with directional sound in order to prevent rebounds and thus reverberation or echo. Two new high definition and high brightness overhead projectors were installed, as well as two 90-inch motorized retractable screens. And the entire system, including the sound, is controlled from the control cabin through a configurable matrix.

In addition, they explained the design of a system of carts used to put the new seats away, thus freeing up space in the Auditorium. A system of motorized curtains was installed, which can be operated from the control cabin. Both the seats and the curtains are fireproof.

The facade of the building was restored and LED lights were added to improve visibility for pedestrians and for security cameras. The floor and marble of the entrance was refurbished and anti-skid pads were added. The access ramp for disabled people was widened and LED light signs of corporeal letters were added, one at the entrance and another one close to the corner of Tucumán street. The doors were restored by carpenters.

For safety reasons, the two staircases were completely renewed; the 134 steps and the wooden handrails were restored. In addition, stainless steel signs were placed on every floor.

 “The great challenge was to establish a master plan discussed by the community, a guiding plan for the building for the next 20 years, which we started to implement. It’s been seven years and we have done many of the things we planned and that can be seen in a miniature model located on the Campus premises, where the final result is shown. This is useful not only for us to see where we are headed, but it also establishes a commitment for future UTN authorities. This is a School policy discussed at Board of Trustees’ meetings and it becomes evident to us when we explain the kind of School we want,” Tiribelli said to conclude.