The University of Memphis, University Center

Memphis, Tennessee

  • FIRM

    Haizlip Studio


    The University of Memphis and the Tennessee Board of Regents

  • AREA

    170,000 sq.ft.





The new University Center is a centerpiece of the University of Memphis’ planning efforts to enrich student life, increase resident population and engage the community. By consolidating amenities in a central location, the building assumes the role of campus hub. It is home to a 350-seat multiuse theater, two restaurants, a ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONASSOCIATED FIRMFisher and Arnold, Inc.COST PER SQ FT$273.00FEATURED IN2010 Architectural PortfolioSUB CATEGORYSpecialized lab, student-body offices and government chambers, ballroom and meeting rooms, and staff offices—organized around a central atrium.

Linking established circulation paths, creating a "social" perimeter and drawing natural light were factors in developing the building plan. A primary corridor arcs from opposing main entrances into a skylighted atrium that is the vertical and horizontal circulation core.

Program spaces on all three floors radiate from the atrium to engage glazed building edges.

The building exterior addresses campus mandates for a traditional architectural approach, while responding directly to natural and social environmental conditions. The west facade features a colonnaded shelf serving as a solar shield, and creates shelter over the quadrangle. The north facade is backdrop to an existing plaza and is punctuated with an entrance rotunda.