Two months ago we were delighted to receive a phone call offering over 300 never-before-seen architectural blueprints of UM buildings from the 1960s. They are plans of the UM’s residence halls designed by the Miami firm Connell, Pierce, Garland, and Freeman in 1967 and 1968. The donor of this wonderful gift is Mr. Lorenzo Otero Jr., a retired architectural draftsman, who studied at the University of Miami in the 1950s and worked for several architectural firms in Miami for four decades.
We appreciate very much the kindness of Mr. Otero’s two grandsons, Benjamin and Brian, who brought us the huge pile of the drawings in the rain saying that “we did not want to throw them away because we thought they could be valuable for the University.” They were very happy to find out that we would create an inventory list of all the drawings donated, preserve them with a help of Richter’s Preservation and Conservation specialist, and make them accessible for the University and the public.
I would like to share with you a picture of Mr. Otero when he was a Cane. I also looked up Mrs. Otero (maiden name Sylvia Masson) because the brothers told me their grandparents met when they were students at the U. Below please see their pictures from the 1952 and 1955 Ibis yearbook.
Architectural drawings, blueprints, and historical images of the University of Miami’s buildings are important components of the University Archives. The collection has been developed in close coordination with UM’s Campus Planning and Development Office, and it has provided excellent materials for our exhibitions, University’s anniversaries and celebrations, and the School of Architecture’s faculty and students. Please go to the links below to find out more about the collection.