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Brunswick University Center in Ohio by Robert Maschke Architects
November 29th, 2011 by Sanjay Gangal
Article source: Robert Maschke Architects
The Brunswick University Center is a new satellite campus for Cuyahoga Community College located in Brunswick, Ohio. The new building situates itself within a campus of existing civic and educational buildings including the Brunswick Community Center, Library, Elementary School, and High School. The design seeks to enhance the campus environment and connection to the context while establishing a unique identity. The Brunswick University Center provides an open and inviting atmosphere for students transitioning to post-secondary education, creating cultural amenity for the community.
At a multiplicity of levels, the architecture is conceived to enhance and express a dynamic sense of movement. The constraints of the site necessitated the building have a modest footprint relative to its volume, creating a variety of opportunities for sectional connections. Programmatically, the majority of classrooms are situated on the uppermost levels, instigating activity through the section. Movement is concentrated in a vertical “Street,” a continuous passage that visually connects a series of interior and exterior lounges.
The sense of movement is carried through in the material palette and articulation of the architecture. A series of envelopes, two masonry, one white, wrap the program and transition seamlessly between interior and exterior surfaces. The masonry envelopes borrow their hue from the adjacent buildings, a gesture that situates the new architecture within the existing context. The white material is utilized to enhance the natural illumination of the interior captured through large glazed openings and skylights, strategically located at public spaces. Fenestration, articulated as horizontal and vertical striations, expresses the movement occurring within, and provides a variety of views whether seated, standing, or walking.
Sustainable design is of the utmost consideration as the project is seeking a LEED silver certification.
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