The architect was asked to expand Haverford College’s informal student dining cafe, “The Coop,” in a way that would update its image to be consistent with the school’s Quaker tradition. The project had to be built inexpensively and concurrently with the construction of a new gym so that it would affect The Coop’s bustling character minimally. The administration pursued ASSOCIATED FIRMMarvin Waxman Engineers; Porter Consulting WorldwideCOST PER SQ FT$200.00FEATURED IN2007 Educational InteriorsINTERIOR CATEGORYCafeterias/Food-Service Areas renovation so that the changes initiated by the new gym would be understood as a campuswide phenomenon, not an isolated event.
The first project phase, which was carried out during the construction of the new gym so that it would not add significantly to construction disturbance, created a new terrace and roofed pergola area. The standing-seam roof works in conjunction with the gym’s colors and references its form and metal detailing. New seating activates the space between the two buildings, creating a lively, people-filled plaza.
The second project phase was carried out during the summer break; the roofed outdoor area was enclosed with a glass wall. Indoor seating capacity was doubled. Materials are contemporary without being trendy. To hit the college’s cost target, the architect reused kitchen equipment, dealt directly with suppliers to avoid contractor markup, and value-engineered lighting and ceiling treatments.