Engineering Student Design Center

Our Journey

An idea was hatched in early 2015 to turn the College of Engineering’s Fabrication Lab into an expanded Design Center, where aspiring engineers can ideate and create in a technologically advanced and modern facility. In April 2021, Diede Construction Inc. began expanding this facility. On May 5th, 2023, the College of Engineering celebrated the grand opening of the Diane Bryant Engineering Student Design Center.


January 2015 College of Engineering Dean Enrique Lavernia forms a team of engineering faculty and staff to engage a broad group of campus stakeholders to provide input on various considerations of the expanded Engineering Fabrication Lab (EFL).
2015-2018 The team of engineering consultants conduct workshops, visioning sessions, focus groups, and facility tours on the needs and requirements for an expanded Engineering Fabrication Lab (EFL)
October 2015 Chancellor Linda P.B. Katehi gives the College approval to begin receiving gifts for the project the project. Dean Curtis and Development Team begin to fundraise for the expansion of the then Engineering Fabrication Laboratory after
June 2016 The first proposal for naming of the ESDC is approved by the Campus Naming Board.
August 2016 The first gift agreement is signed by Brian Underwood and Carol Blacutt-Underwood to name the Blacutt-Underwood Lobby.
September 2017

Chancellor’s Committee on Campus Planning and Design – Design and Environmental Approval of expansion plans for the Engineering Student Design Center.

Assistant Adjunct Professor Kurt Kornbluth, Ph.D. joins the ESDC planning team as Faculty Champion

August 2018 Engineering consultant team summarizes feedback from stakeholders and finalizes 100% Design Development Narrative
August 2019 Campus leadership authorizes construction to move forward
September 2019 Dean Curtis convenes faculty, staff and students to form ESDC Implementation Committee to review, refine and promote the project.
January 2020 College of Engineering and Design and Construction Management initiate the bidding process to be able to select construction company.
May 2020 Diede Construction Inc. is selected for the expansion and renovation
October 2020 College hosts virtual Groundbreaking for UC Davis community.
April 2021 Construction begins
Summer 2021 Demolition, Earthwork, Underground Utilities
December 2021 Slab on Grade
February 2022 Steel Structure
March 2022 Metal Stud Framing and Outdoor Student Plaza
April 2022 Roofing Installed
May 2022 Fire proof spray installed on ceiling and roof
Summer 2022 Electrical, wall framing installed
September 2022 Landscaping installed
October 2022 Interior Finishes
December 2022 Phase 1 Install Equipment
January 2023 Exterior Metal Panels
March 2023 Phase 2 Install equipment
May 2023 Grand Opening Celebration
June 2023 Final Equipment Installation
September 2023 Fully Open and Classes Begin