Originally conceived by the campus planners as the "Great Court," the college‘s academic buildings are situated around the library and bookstore and are linked by covered walkways that define the campus center plaza. Each building is surrounded by a series of open spaces and pedestrian streets, which reinforces the building connection to the plaza. The ASSOCIATED FIRMMathews Nielsen Landscape ArchitectsFEATURED IN2009 Architectural PortfolioSUB CATEGORYLandscape center plaza is defined by the modern architecture and brown brick that dominate the campus. Portions of the plaza are above occupied spaces, making it a de facto roof.
The goal was to stop the surface flooding and chronic leaks into the occupied spaces below the plaza. Purchase College saw the plaza rehabilitation as an opportunity to re-evaluate the surface treatments and drainage methodology. The challenge was to create a more humanistic and inviting environment while respecting the vision of the original campus architect.
The scope of work includes removing and replacing the existing pavement, waterproofing, drains and piping required to restore a fully functioning drainage system. Newly created planting beds will define walkways, areas of interaction and seating. Aesthetically, the landscape design will be a significant asset for the plaza. The plans will create maximum seasonal diversity and introduce a variety of colors to the plaza.
The Campus Center Plaza improvements include several green initiatives: 4,000 linear feet of existing granite paving will be reused as curbing; and the amount of pavement will be reduced by 25 percent and landscape increased by two-thirds, improving water quality and decreasing runoff by filtering the rain water through the planting beds. Enhancements will include new pavements, new site furnishings, improved landscaped areas and lighting upgrades.