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Hitt Research and Innovation Lab

Exterior of the Hitt Research and Innovation Lab
Interior of the Hitt Research and Innovation Lab

The Hitt Research and Innovation Lab will be a defining feature of the Myers-Lawson School of Construction's state-of-the-art Hitt Hall.

This modern multipurpose facility is set to be an epicenter of construction innovation, fostering an environment where creativity, exploration, and cutting-edge technology meet.

About the Lab

Generously donated by HITT Contracting, the modular, 6,400 square-foot structure will offer a space for students of the Myers-Lawson School of Construction and other collaborating departments to explore, innovate, and define the future of construction. This dynamic space has been specifically designed to support both temporary and large-scale student-based projects, providing our students with unparalleled opportunities to develop and test their concepts. Here, theoretical knowledge transforms into practical skill, and ideas are given the freedom to evolve into groundbreaking solutions.

Designed as a kit of parts, this structure showcases an innovative, prefabricated building skin system and a mass timber hybrid panel structure system. The modular design allows for components to be switched out for various research projects, making the facility adaptable and versatile. The HITT Research and Demonstration Structure is a living testament to the evolution of the construction industry, bridging research, student learning, and the construction talent pipeline in Virginia.

Innovation Plaza

Complementing the Innovation Lab, the exterior Innovation Plaza will provide additional space for outdoor instruction, demonstrations, and even dining. This space embodies the philosophy of learning beyond the classroom, facilitating a fusion of practical instruction and hands-on experimentation. From staging construction demonstrations to hosting guest lectures and collaborative work, the Innovation Plaza enhances the student learning experience in a vibrant and engaging setting.

An Innovative Concept

The research and demonstration structure is not just a space for construction research; it is a research project in itself. Originally built in Northern Virginia, the structure served as a testing site for HITT Contracting’s Research and Development team to evaluate construction methods’ potential to deliver projects in reduced time, on-site labor, and costs. The structure was then deconstructed, delivered, and reconstructed at its current location off Prices Fork Road in Blacksburg.