Drexel University opens new Science Building
While most colleges have a dedicated campus green, one of the largest new green spaces on Drexel University’s Philadelphia campus is not outside but inside the newly opened Constantine N. Papadakis Integrated Sciences Building. Designed by Toronto based Diamond and Schmitt Architects with local architect H2L2, the five storey building serves as a campus gateway and sets a new benchmark for sustainable design at US universities with its 75’ living wall, the largest of its kind in North America.
Designed and installed by NEDLAW, the biowall is located is in the atrium of the building. The wall uses plants’ natural respiratory properties to cool the inside air in the summer and function like a humidifier in the winter. In addition to be a decorative addition to the building’s lobby, the wall will clean the air and be used by professors and students to examine its effects on the interior atmospheres and its potential health benefits for commercial and academic applications.
Elsewhere in the building, on the second, third and fourth level, are located small loungers where students and faculty can congregate and collaborate. Commenting on the building’s design at the opening, Dr. Donna Muraskos, dean of Drexel’s College of Arts and Sciences said: "The essence of this structure - a place for faculty and students to meet, to discuss ideas, and to be inspired - is felt from the open atrium up to the elegant skylights."