Carleton College, Recreation Center

Northfield, Minnesota

The architect was selected to design a new indoor recreational facility for Carleton College, an independent and highly selective liberal-arts college. The main objectives of the new building were to support recreational activities and to provide a space for social events.

After studying the layout of the campus, the designers decided to build the new recreational ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCOST PER SQ FT$120.95FEATURED IN2001 Architectural Portfolio on the edge of campus, near the outdoor playing fields and arboretum. This meant that the facility would have to be built into a hillside and thus, scale and setting were crucial. There are no square corners but plenty of curved shapes, including a serpentine wall bordering the arboretum and the path leading to the playing fields. The angled walls give a false sense of perspective, while the horizontal banding breaks up the vertical scale.

The two-story facade faces campus while the one-story facade faces the playing fields. This allows students to circulate through the building and transverse the hill and get to the playing fields.