History lessons

Monday 13 Jan 2014

Massachusetts-based architecture firm Bruner/Cott Associates are behind the renewal of Vanderbilt University's original student centre, which opened last autumn.

The original building, a 1925 Tudor Revival building, was designed by Henry C. Hibbs as a World War I memorial that is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The firm's initial study developed a reuse programme to take advantage of the central location of this small building while respecting its historical significance, details and finishes. Vanderbilt's development team (administration, faculty, staff, and students) agreed that the revitalised Alumni Hall would become a satellite centre in relation to the other student centres on campus.

The introduction of new mechanical systems into its historic interiors was one of the major design challenges which faced the firm. However, exterior additions on the rear facade provide the necessary mechanical, life safety, and accessibility improvements.

New programming in the hall includes formal event space, high-tech classrooms, study lounges, performance space, a writing studio, an exercise room, the Bamboo Bistro, and faculty offices.

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