Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Anti-Riot Architecture

I walked myself over to the campus library this morning to get some Marlowe books, and on the way, I saw the new student center building. When I left in late summer, they were breaking ground. Now the building looks pretty complete from the outside. And what I could see is beautiful!

It's our first new building here since the '70s, if I recall correctly. Remember '70s campus architecture? It was all about limiting and containing riots. Our other buildings tend to look like big blocks with tiny windows, mostly well out of reach of anyone on the ground.

But this new building has lots of beautiful, big windows. Supposedly it's designed to use passive solar and such when it can (there's not much solar during winter here), and to be quite energy conservative.

Really, it's beautiful. I stared out at it from the upper floor of the library and thought, wow, that's a real improvement!

And then I thought about how many more steps the administrators will have to take to get there compared to the current student center (which is where food and the bookstore and such are available). Currently, they have a few steps across a covered walkway, or if the weather's really nasty, they can go underground.

I wonder if there's a new tunnel being built for them?

Did I mention how beautiful the building looks? It's so NOT anti-riot architecture! Windows!

We're supposed to build a new academic building and our department is supposed to move there in a couple years. I hope it also has beautiful windows! Windows!

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