The 70,000 sq ft student hub is an addition to the previously completed Phase 2 academic building, and contains a gymnasium and running track, fitness studios, study spaces, club rooms, food outlets, and administrative spaces, establishing a social core for the growing campus.
A simple rectangular form encompasses a complex interrelation of spaces in the interior, fostering a sense of closeness and community among the student population. The interior spaces are carefully curated to create visual connections between the diverse mix of functions, encouraging interactions between programs and users that produce a layered experience as one moves through the building.
The San Francisco Conservatory of Music’s Bowes Center is a dynamic social and cultural destination that melds musical education, performance, and public experience.The new building is designed as a “vertical campus” that incorporates housing, dining, classrooms, rehearsal rooms, performances spaces, faculty offices, and a radio station under one roof. This rich program uses the latest in acoustical innovation and is consciously stacked in opposition to urban sprawl in a growing city. Set within the historic Civic Center's cultural and arts district, the Bowes Center blends and asserts itself through compatible materials and proportions that echo its surroundings.
Working closely with Peabody College’s administration, faculty and staff, and with Vanderbilt University’s Campus Planning Department, SGA guided the programming, concept and development efforts, providing academic design expertise that reimagines Peabody’s teaching and learning environment.
Project scope includes 55,000 sq ft of renovations to two existing 1912-era Beaux Arts academic buildings, repurposing existing spaces for classroom and administrative use. Challenges for the project seeking LEED Gold included full upgrades for all services, state-of-the-art IT/AV instructional spaces, and exterior historic restorations of the exterior.
The design concept behind the renovation focuses on improving the “seam” between the two eras—knitting together the old and the new. A “main street” connection creates two dominant entries: one to the south facing campus mall and one to the north greeting the flow of traffic from transit, athletics, and student housing.
The PUB has become a student-facing building with something for everyone. The expansive dining area wraps around the atrium with a variety of eating and lounge seating. A comfortable commuter lounge offers space for students to hang out while waiting for public transportation. And glass walls lining the atrium ensure student organizations are highly visible—encouraging everyone to get involved.
Set apart from this main rectilinear teaching wing and in an orchestrated contrast of masses, the Premier Learning Space are clad in zinc and articulated as curved, organic extrusions. Each responds to the site’s sloping landscape, moving students energetically through the space and spiralling upward to frame a different view of the precinct.
The building’s striking form and glinting materiality serves as a form of wayfinding, ushering students across the link bridge and creating a campus traversability that had never existed before. The first large general-purpose learning and teaching space added to the campus in a decade, Woods Bagot has created a learning landmark that embodies the university’s commitment to evolving pedagogies. A campus catalyst and arresting arrival point within the university’s Elgar Road Precinct, the building’s impact extends well beyond its perimeter.