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A Shared Architecture School

Part 1 Project 2012
Ben Rowe
Robert Gordon University Aberdeen UK
A Shared Architecture School

Brief: To design a new architecture school, which will provide the best and most ecologically sound facilities for architecture studies in the UK, with a strong teaching as well as research ethos. The school will also incorporate both cutting edge and time served methods of educating architects. Over time, this will create new impetus and expertise in its graduates to tackle both the mediocre architecture of the area as well as having a positive and challenging effect on the UK and internationally.

In an architecture school the student learns through interaction with peers, which fosters a sense of shared insight and creativity. Considering this collaboration, I wanted to create a building which facilitated this connection between students from all years. The main instrument in this sense of connection is the central tower. This tower houses studios, review areas, computer labs, seminar rooms and meeting rooms. Having these elements suspended in the central core nurtures interaction between passing students and a sharing of ideas, creating a hive of activity and creativity. The form and position of the suspended plates in the central tower give a hierarchy to the different uses in having the public spaces double or triple height and the private single height. This, combined with people having to walk through the public spaces and circulate away from the private spaces, creates spaces which encourage interaction.

The form of the building is determined by the acknowledgement of the new library and Zoology building and how the space between them lays empty. Creating a tower in this void gives the university a new strong front on St. Machar Drive, completing the elevation. The tower of the building is surrounded by single storeys to the South and East and four storeys to the North and West, emphasising the central tower by giving a height relationship with the surrounding elements.

Overall, the design encourages a sense of community and shared learning environment for students across all years.

Ben Rowe

Tutor(s)

2012
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