Eoin Norris, a student from Waterford, worked on the world’s largest ‘high definition video billboard’ in the most famous square in the world as part of his industrial placement on the BSc (Hons) in Construction Management & Engineering programme at Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT).
Eoin worked with Turner Construction who renovated part of the Marriott Marquis Hotel, including structural alterations to the building’s façade to accommodate the massive screen. The billboard, which is the world’s largest high-definition display at 100.5 metres wide by 24 metres tall, spans the entire block from 45th Street to 46th Street on Broadway in the centre of Times Square. Google have become the first company to rent the billboard, which costs an estimated $2.5 million to hire for 4 weeks.
The project team faced significant technical and logistical challenges, particularly working in the heart of Times Square, where an average 300,000 pedestrians and 115,000 vehicles pass by every day. According to Eoin, working with Turner Construction on such a high profile and challenging project “has given me great confidence both in myself and in working on the construction site. The skills obtained from the 30 week placement include communication and management, with an in-depth insight into the administration side of construction along with the supervision of the various trades on-site.”
Hailing from County Waterford, Eoin completed his Leaving Certificate at Comeragh College in Carrick-On-Suir, prior to commencing his studies at WIT. He describes his time in New York City as “a life changing experience, not only to open my eyes to the construction industry but it also shown me what real life is like. Working with a large scale company like Turner, has provided me with essential experience that will be most beneficial to my career in the industry and has given me a good foundation to build upon.”
Turner Construction is one of the largest construction management firms in the United States, with a turnover in excess of $9 billion and over 5000 employees. The Construction Management & Engineering programme at WIT has a long-standing relationship with Turner Construction, sending two students to New York City every year on Industrial Placement. These students have worked on a number of iconic projects including the new Yankee Stadium, the renovation of Madison Square Garden, a 40 storey office tower in mid-town Manhattan and the Renzo Piano-designed Whitney Museum of American Art.