Facilities Focus

Designed to Flow

Unified design can steer campuses into the 21st century, once we figure out how to use it.
 

DON'T WORRY IF YOU can’t express the difference between long-term planning and unified design on a campus. Even architects say they’re fuzzy on the difference.

But Where Are the Books?

As academic libraries evolve beyond information storage, institutions turn to space-saving automated retrieval systems.

SOME MIGHT QUESTION THE need for libraries, with so much now available online. But campus libraries have evolved into much more than information storage facilities, says Joseph Rizzo, an architect for RMJM Hillier. “Libraries are becoming part of the broader academic and social mission.” Typical amenities now include quiet study spaces, meeting rooms, cafes, and even fireplaces.

Talk the Walk

It's not enough for campus leaders to know where a building project stands. Today, everyone must be in the loop.

WALLACE MLYNIEC, A professor of clinical legal studies at Georgetown University, learned the art of communicating about campus construction out of sheer necessity. When the Hotung International Law Building and the Georgetown Sport and Fitness Center were constructed a few years ago next to two student residences and a classroom building at the Law School campus, "the notion of not letting people know in advance what was going on very quickly became an issue for us," says Mlyniec, who was appointed chair of the project committee.

On the Right Track

Holistic building assessment and tracking tools and techniques help tell the facilities story.

A Private Showing

Partnerships between private developers and IHEs have reached a new level of sophistication.

WHEN UPS NEEDED EMPLOYEES at its Louisville hub, the University of Louisville's (Ky.) students presented the perfect candidate pool. UPS sweetened the pot with full scholarships, a 401(k) plan, housing and book allowances, health care services, and union wages. But to be able to work odd hours through the night, students needed a place to crash where their comings and goings didn't disturb normal dorm activities. The state of Kentucky and the university saw one clear answer: bring in a private developer to create, finance, and operate a 1,200-bed housing unit.

Undergraduate Research Grows Up

Science facility upgrades are the rage on campuses especially as other institutions score big with their new buildings.

SCIENCE PROFESSORS BEGAN shifting their classroom curricula in the early 1990s. Turns out, studies showed that they could attract more students to their disciplines if the kids were allowed to get their hands on the good stuff. Participating in research as early as freshman year-and we're talking not talking about dissecting a frog-fosters a contagious excitement. Ricky Cox, a biomedical chemist at Murray State University (Ky.), invites his undergraduates to help him in the lab, and as a result, one girl recently graduated with five publication credits to her name.

The President's Residence

Despite long-held tradition at some institutions, the official presidential home is not considered the one-building-fits-all facility that it used to be.

IT'S A PERK THAT TENDS TO BE MORE DREADED THAN WEL-comed by institutional leaders. The official president's house could be the grandest property on campus, but actually residing there requires a balancing act between public and private lives that many presidential families would rather not perform.

Building for Campus and Community

A growing number of institutions and their surrounding communities are approaching facilities from a shared-use perspective.

Come one, come all: That's the concept behind a trend gaining momentum, as institutions of higher ed open facilities to the community. But shared use isn't just about open doors. Some IHEs are partnering with local public entities to fund, design, and operate buildings jointly.