McKinney York Architects

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Holland Family Student Center

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Project Process

McKinney York performed an extensive analysis of existing conditions, space needs and potential options for this feasibility study for an addition and renovation for the Geology Building at the Jackson School of Geosciences. The existing building is located along the East Mall of the University, which offers an opportunity for a dramatic presence by the Jackson School within the campus master plan. Programmatic elements included a student lounge containing areas for casual gathering adjacent to a coffee bar; a two-story space for informal meetings fronting the East Mall; student meeting, advising, and work rooms; and new research laboratories, classrooms, and seminar spaces. Relocation plans for faculty and administrative offices were required to accommodate these new spaces.

McKinney York was also commissioned to design the fundraising brochure used to show the project to potential donors.

With 15,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor space, the Student Center provides a central hub for the Jackson School of Geosciences community, befitting the preeminent international geosciences program. With a new glassy façade and courtyard prominently located along the East Mall in the heart of the campus, the Student Center is the new “public face” for the school, welcoming students, faculty, and visitors. McKinney York transformed a dark, double-loaded corridor and office space into a wide open, daylit area for study, meetings, dining, and casual interaction.  A casual study space – visually anchored at either end by a 6’ diameter projection globe and a 1,600 lb. geode specimen from the school’s collection – look onto an expansive, tree-shaded courtyard and rock garden.  A rich palette of materials emphasizes stone and earthy colors in keeping with the school’s mission. Donor recognition elements are thoughtfully integrated into the fabric of the architecture.

Publication: Austin Business Journal, Mar 2013

Sustainability: LEED CI Gold Certified, reduction of urban heat-island effect, bicycle storage and shower facilities, air and water permeable paving systems to reduce storm-water runoff and ensure health of existing trees, high-efficiency plumbing fixtures (35% reduction over code), drought-tolerant native vegetation, high-efficiency irrigation, high-efficiency lighting (30% power reduction over code), daylight and occupancy sensing controls, zoned heating and cooling, day-lit occupied areas, salvaged and reused materials, locally manufactured and extracted materials. 96% FSC certified woods, 97% of construction waste diverted from landfill, low-emitting materials, views to exterior, high-efficiency ventilation, construction air quality control plan

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