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RBA ichmond


Create and Pilote the Vessel of Life

Richmond Intermediate Terminal Warehouse No. 3

3101 East Main Street | Richmond, Virginia Future home of the Richmond Boatwright Academy


Chase R. Cothran Senior Thesis Project 2009 Virginia Commonwealth University | Department of Interior Design

Project Insight

The Richmond Boatwright Academy: A hands-on boatwright school focusing on team building excercises and the art of small vessel construction.

Site Overview

The RBA proposed site is rich in content for creating a boatwright school. Its features include:

photo courtesy of

>The City’s only public Boat Ramp >Close proximity to Tobacco Row, but still far enough away to offer a quiet, peaceful escape from city conjestion >Abundant green space, and exterior paved surfaces. >Easy street Access and loading bays.

Waterfront vistas and a city skyline is clearly visible from the site, retaining a connection to the city. Visible on the left is the previous docking location of the Anna Belle Lee and U of R’s crew team facilities.

Panoramic Site View

Facilities Offered by the Academy: > State of the art boat construction and test facilites, as well as support areas for the surrounding crew teams. > An educational program focusing on the history of watercraft indigenous to Richmond and the surrounding Chesapeake bay watershed. > A community impact that extends beyond it’s doors, giving light to an aquatic culture that may not be accessible to Richmonders. > A revitalization of Richmond’s waterfront and adding more water born activities.

Chase R. Cothran Senior Thesis Project 2009 Virginia Commonwealth University | Department of Interior Design


A Vessel for Creativity. The word vessel has many definitions applied to it; a large ship or boat, a hollow container used to store liquid, or a duct or canal. More importantly it is also defined as holding or embodying a particular quality. This form is more interesting when relative to something unseen and intangible, such as creativity. If the creative power of humanity could be contained by this facility, peoples dreams and visions could be cultivated among the rich fabric created by individuals collaborating towards a common goal. Their craft techniques would be tested along side their individual dedication.

Sketches/ Planning Models



Richmond Boatbuilding Academy Concept Poster  

Richmond Boatbuilding Academy Concept Poster presentations for site and sketch model descriptions.

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