The first challenge of the project was to “site” this 32,000-square-foot, single-story facility, as well as its accompanying 315-space parking area. Disruption of the 4.5 acres of natural wetlands was not an option. However, the design team wanted to take advantage of the tall, mature wetlands, which would create a beautiful backdrop for this facility.
Taking COST PER SQ FT$133.00FEATURED IN2004 Educational InteriorsINTERIOR CATEGORYCommon Areas of a natural, peninsula-shaped piece of land on the west side of the wetlands, a radial floor plan began to emerge. This type of building shape would allow the building to nestle into the wetlands. It also would maximize the views from the building interior.
The three-leg radial plan allows the university to showcase all services and amenities from one central location. Once inside the large, daylighted atrium, a person sees computer classrooms, a cyber cafe, library/technology center, presentation classroom and conference room. To the right, the classroom wing is composed of three computer labs, a science classroom and 11 standard classrooms of various sizes. To the left is the entrance to the administration wing, which includes a staff lounge, work room and administration offices. The entry atrium has become a hub of activity.