Virginia Tech Board Of Visitors Approves Name Of Future Building Construction Home

BLACKSBURG, Va., March 10, 2003 – "Bishop-Favrao Hall" will be the official name of the newest addition to the College of Architecture & Urban Studies, approved by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors at its meeting today. Bishop-Favrao Hall will be the future home of the Building Construction department, named after Richard Bishop, 1967 graduate of the building construction program and key alumni donor for the building, and William Favrao, founder of the university's construction program in the mid-40s.

A Christiansburg native and recently retired founder/partner of Columbia Builders, Bishop's generous financial contributions have had a great impact on the university and the department through scholarships and other major gifts. He currently serves on the Building Construction Advisory Board and the College of Architecture and Urban Studies Advisory Council. He was also a member of the college's campaign committee during the Campaign for Virginia Tech, as well as being a member of the overall campaign's steering committee and chair of the Baltimore regional campaign.

Bishop credits the late Professor Favrao as the person who made the most difference in his life. "I respected him. He was tough, but I admired him and he inspired me to get through school." Favrao founded the building construction program in 1947 and served as chair until his death in 1977. He was a member of American Institute of Contractors, the National Association of Home Builders, the Home Builders Association of Virginia, and Sigma Lambda Chi. Favrao was also a founding member and organizer of the Associated Schools of Construction. In 1972, he was the recipient of the William E. Wine Award, the University's top honor for teaching, and in 1974, was inducted into the Academy of Teaching Excellence.

Bishop's lead gift for the building will be added to a $2.5 million state bond package, which was approved by Virginia voters on the ballot last November. The remaining $1.5 million in funding will be secured through alumni and friends of the department for this $7.5 million total project.

The proposed building will house the department of building construction's administrative and faculty offices, and provide much needed classroom space, seminar rooms, and studios, as student enrollment has doubled over the past five years. The new facility will also provide state-of-the-art laboratory spaces, include testing labs, wet labs, material handling, tool and welding labs, and workshops for assembly of construction systems. The department has been a part of the College of Architecture & Urban Studies since 1964 and is currently located in Burruss Hall.