VCU School of Engineering Foundation Purchases Former Auto Shop for Makerspace

Grubbs Garage
Pictured above: Grubbs Garage

By Rebecca E. Jones

The VCU School of Engineering Foundation recently purchased the former Grubbs’ Auto Service property at 12 W. Cary St. The 57-year-old building is slated to be refurbished and opened in spring 2018 as a makerspace for student projects and student vehicle performance teams.

“The Engineering Foundation’s generous support for this purchase allows the school to expand capacity and capabilities in providing experiential learning environments for students to enhance their skills in innovation, entrepreneurship and leadership that companies value in future hires,” said L. Franklin Bost, M.B.A., I.D.S.A., executive associate dean for innovation and outreach, director of the VCU Institute for Engineering and Medicine and faculty in the Department of Mechanical and Nuclear Engineering.

The School of Engineering’s capstone courses have nearly 100 student teams working on senior design projects. Many project challenges presented by industry supporters will benefit from the heavy machine equipment available in this facility. This new facility also will support continued development of the students’ Formula SAE (Society of Automotive Engineers) competition vehicles, along with future projects such as a hyperloop vehicle and solar-powered vehicle teams.