Old Dominion University (ODU) and Norfolk State University (NSU) partnered with the city of Virginia Beach in an effort to find a permanent location for a satellite campus. Old Dominion University proposed a campus master plan sharing land and other resources on property owned by Tidewater Community College and a 37-acre site donated by the city. Ultimate development of COST PER SQ FT$127.79FEATURED IN2000 Architectural Portfolio master plan identified eight future buildings totaling approximately 400,000 square feet. Phase I development includes an 86,300-square-foot building with parking for 650 cars. The first building is situated to maximize public visibility from Princess Anne Road, which is envisioned by the city as the future technology corridor in Virginia Beach.
To serve the special needs of non-traditional students, including the recognition that peak student attendance occurs during late afternoon and evening hours, much design emphasis focused on student convenience, security and facilitating technology access in all areas of the building, including non-instructional spaces. The program is intended to fulfill the Phase I building’s function as a mini-campus. Program areas include four Teletechnet classrooms, two virtual classrooms, interactive computer labs, 120-seat mediated lecture room, the Information Resource Center, deli, student lounge and registration area.
The atrium is an essential feature of the Virginia Beach Higher Education Center for its vital functional use as a university, community and corporate gathering space. It is a focal point and orienting element within the building, and is on axis with a future pedestrian quadrangle identified in the master plan. The atrium features the university’s investment in and commitment to technology, and serves as space to register and provide course information to students. It admits diffused natural light into the center of the building, appropriately illuminating the technology-rich classrooms and laboratories.
The building committee decided that the exterior architecture for this satellite campus should convey a 21st-century collegiate image, thereby highlighting this Phase I structure as the first increment of a new four-year “university” in the city. It also mandated that the Phase I Virginia Beach Higher Education Center be compatible with existing buildings at Tidewater Community College. As a result, the building design employs a palette of precast concrete highlights and field brick similar to the existing campus to the west.
Photographer: ©Lee Brauer/Lee Brauer Photography