Located in Montgomery, Alabama, this center is known for its years of courtroom accomplishments, legal victories against white supremacist groups, monitoring of hate activity across the country, national tolerance education, and the Civil Rights Memorial. The Center was founded in 1971 by Morris Dees and Joe Levin, two southern lawyers who shared a commitment to racial equality.
The work of the Southern Poverty Law Center is essential to this country in achieving equality for all. The design for their new headquarters building strives to educate the visitor/participant about the issues surrounding the Civil Rights movement. However, this task cannot be achieved by architecture alone. It must be a combination of the physical environment and the efforts of the people within.
The design team is proud to be involved with such an organization.
The building design works to further the cause of Civil Rights through a variety of design issues. As an icon for the work of the Southern Poverty Law Center, the building will act as a reminder that abuses of civil rights still are many and widespread. In addition, the building is part of a larger site context that includes the Civil Rights Memorial and the church where Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. first began his sermons on equality.
The siting of the building takes advantage of these features by pushing back from the memorial to create a public plaza. This creates a precinct for the memorial and the new headquarters building. The building raises up from its concrete base to provide unobstructed views of Dr. King’s church from the memorial.
The interior layout of the building is designed to promote interaction. The building organizes into two components. The “support core” contains all support services and hard-wall spaces. The “office block” is a column-free, open office environment with its primary view oriented to the north. This open office block will foster a new era of interaction among the lawyers, whose work space has until now been isolated by hard-wall offices.
The open office area gets floor-to-ceiling glass facing north. By contrast, the south facade is more solid, giving only specific views of the memorial. The experience of seeing the memorial becomes a special event for the staff member who works in the building throughout the day.
Supporting the theme of interaction, the double-height library/work spaces create an opportunity for team interaction. They face to the south, giving them a specific and directed view of the Civil Rights Memorial. These spaces are also visible to the visitors of the memorial, creating a visual connection between the civil rights activist of the past and those currently working for the cause.
The new headquarters is a six-story, 62,000 square foot facility with underground parking for approximately 120 cars. The building consists of a concrete and steel structural frame, with stone and metal cladding.
Syracuse University needed housing to supports its law school expansion without affecting the University’s debt capacity. Erdy McHenry was able to design the University’s first privatized collegiate housing development in a way that would both meet the needs of the University, enhance the campus and learning experience for the law student, and stay under the proposed budget. The final Campus West at Syracuse University was successfully completed under budget, and upon its on-scheduled completion, held a 97% occupation rate. It gives Syracuse the modern look it desired, and created a student-oriented space that also keeps residents connected with the surrounding community.
The new housing places an emphasis on study, specific to the needs of graduate and law school students. The housing primarily consists of studio and one-bedroom units to give the students’ privacy and to fuel a constructive study environment.
Erdy McHenry Architecture has been commissioned to create a Master Plan for the Teaching Dairy Barn (recently finished) and Large Animal Teaching Complex (LATC) for Cornell University. The master plan describes the vision, principles and essential features that will guide the near-term and long-range development of the proposed site, and will establish objectives for the physical and functional structure of the site.
The Teaching Dairy Barn and its associated out-buildings were the first structures to be completed within Phase I of the Master Plan implementation. The sleek and modern building currently houses approximately 80 cows, with the capacity to hold 60 more for milking and an additional 30 “dry” cows (cows in between lactations and preparing to start the next).
The facilities include overhead fans, stall areas equipped with soft bedding, and electric backscratchers designed for cows to brush up against.
The Milking Center is composed of two areas—a milking and holding area and a training/observation area. The sides of the milking area are open to the elements with operable curtains on the east and west walls to seal the building during the winter months. Overlooking the milking parlor is a classroom designed for the students to observe the parlor and nearby stalls. The viewing/classroom space overlooking the milking parlor has a glass wall on the parlor side and is accessible via either a ramp from the west side or stairs on the east side.
The Pennsylvania Ballet’s Board of Trustees generated a strategic plan designed to heighten the organization’s national profile. The plan included establishing a school for classical ballet and expanding the organization’s presence in the community through outreach and education. Migrating to a new home on the Avenue of the Arts has become a key component in implementing this plan.
The Pennsylvania Ballet’s current residence—and its home of the past 20 years—on South Broad Street is inadequate to meet the needs of the growing ballet company, as well as the needs of The Rock School, a significant organization with which it shares its facility. The proposed site for the Pennsylvania Ballet to call its new home is approximately 76,000 square feet divided among four buildings and holds 70+ feet of frontage along North Broad Street in Center City. This area is already home to several longstanding cultural and historic institutions, including the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts (PAFA) and the Masonic Temple. Additionally, there is currently a proposed expansion of the Convention Center which will undoubtedly expand the cultural capital of this site.
The new complex, along The Avenue of The Arts, will allow the Ballet’s multiple departments to exist under one roof. This facility will establish a tangible identity for the Pennsylvania Ballet on the city’s major arts corridor, cementing the Ballet as an important part of the region’s cultural landscape and a major presence on Broad Street.
It’s new entrance will be set back from Broad Street and will be accessed by passing through a dynamic garden space. The garden space will have a series of landscaped benches where staff, dancers, and others involved with the Ballet can sit and relax. The space will be wrapped by a site wall giving a sense of privacy to the garden and creating a stronger street presence for the complex.
At the northwest corner of the site, the current White Building will be renovated for the Ballet’s executive departments and will feature a mix of open office space planning and closed offices for department heads. Each office floor will feature a shared conference room and shared filing space.
The Shed and Garage buildings are located at the east of the site. Both buildings will be renovated and used for rehearsal studios and related program. The renovations will maintain the character of the former buildings by exposing existing brick walls and re-using existing window openings. A new roof will be built over the shed that will allow daylight into the rehearsal studios.
Connecting the White Building and the Shed Garage Renovation is a new construction that contains a reception area, dancer locker rooms, and a 3500 sf rehearsal studio. The rehearsal studio’s size will finally allow the Ballet to replicate the stage of The Academy of Music in preparation for performances. The rehearsal studio will feature a glazed wall where people can observe dancers in rehearsal. A large skylight in the reception area will flood the area with daylight.
The renovated shed building and Studio Building will feature a green roof system that will aid in controlling the temperature of the spaces, as well as provide an attractive roofscape to surrounding buildings.
The Rutgers Camden Graduate Student housing project is aimed at boosting on-campus enrollment and revitalizing the city’s downtown region. The 12-story building at 330 Cooper Street is the first new student housing space in Camden in more than two decades. It houses 350 students and also includes approximately 7,000 square feet of retail space that helps define the building at street level. This space re-establishes a language of community that welcomes and greets pedestrians and residents alike. The rooftop seen at the lobby entrance of the complex is lined with greenspace that serves as both a college quad and a typical urban park.
Erdy McHenry Architecture teamed up with Michaels Development Company (MDC) for this monumental project. MDC’s university housing division, University Student Living, develops, constructs, and manages student housing communities in areas adjacent to colleges and universities across the country. The Rutgers Student Governing Association had a longstanding goal to increase on-campus population, and this complex helps to answer that endeavor. The housing and retail space brings new energy to the campus and creates critical mass which will likely expand to surrounding downtown Camden and encourage future city development.
Through innovative building practices, coalesced with a distinct neighborhood vernacular, the project will take part in revitalizing Camden’s community while creating a distinct collegiate environment.
The Northside Dining Terrace is a 5,000 square foot addition to the existing Kelly Hall dormitory on the campus of Drexel University.
The Dining Terrace seats approximately 140 students inside with additional seating outside on the terrace and steps. The space was designed to facilitate a pedestrian link for a community of students, faculty and staff. Located amongst a collegiate urban fabric, it provides a scenery astray from the typical college dinning experience by establishing a more intimate and less institutional setting.
The Dining Terrace has been awarded the 2010 GBCA Award for Best Institutional Project under $15 million.
Children’s Crisis Treatment Center (CcTC) is a non-profit organization that provides comprehensive mental health services to Philadelphia’s neediest children and their families. CcTC staff is currently spread out between two facilities, the primary location at 1823 Callowhill St. and a rented space at 417 N 8th St. The goal of this project is to consolidate the two disparate locations into the 1823 Callowhill facility by renovating the existing building and providing a 15,000 square foot addition.
The new building will allow all of CcTC’s departments to exist under one roof. This will ultimately support the enhancement of current programs while allocating additional areas to accommodate their current “homeless” staff. The open-space design promotes collaboration among staff members within the workplace and encourages a group approach to service delivery. This environment will ensure that clients have the benefit of a full team of clinicians and professionals working cohesively.
A sense of openness is encouraged throughout the entire project. Windows to be provided in staff areas will overlook the playground, which will allow staff to focus attentions on the children at play and remind staff members of the missions/goals of the program. The renovations to the building entrance will provide a warm, personal and welcoming environment in place of the existing impersonal, locked/buzzer entrance. The completed renovation and addition to the CcTC facility will increase the efficiency of the center and enable the staff to effectively pursue the mission of providing high quality services to all of their clients.
The building’s massing acts to elevate the existing context by creating a form that is consistent with the remaining urban fabric of “freestanding” row homes. The two bar shapes (chapel and dormitory) represent row home forms and create a safe interior gathering space and recreation area. The two forms are connected at each level by translucent bridges that subtly reveal silhouettes of the members as they move toward the chapel. This revealing of the circulation seeks to connect the exterior to the activities of the interior.
The building will stand as a positive element of the community and have a prominent presence at street level, as well as a recognizable facade from the Ben Franklin Bridge. The new center will be a four-story, 20,000-square-foot facility that will have a 45-bed residential capacity, a chapel for worship and group meetings, and an exterior recreational area.
Drexel University’s history and reputation are heavily rooted in engineering and technology disciplines, so it seems only appropriate that those aspects of its built environment occupy a more prominent place in the conceptual infrastructure of the campus. This new dormitory is a building that is more than a superficial or decorative relationship, but rather a collaboration that respects and reflects the fundamental pedagogy of Drexel’s historical roots.
This project was a collaboration between Erdy McHenry Architecture and Cecil Balmond, one of the worlds leading structural engineers. The building is the first at Drexel to establish and promote a design approach that embraces an integrated design team where the systems and structures are the conceptual drivers.
The dormitory plan strives to achieve a high level of efficiency by locating all stacked core elements toward the center of the plan and through allowing the students rooms to radiate about the edge of the core. While the core maintains the same orientation throughout the entire height of the building, the students’ rooms rotate about the core.
In response to Drexel University’s acute shortage for undergraduate student housing, the new dormitory was designed, engineered and constructed in fewer than 13 months. The project was organized by the university as design-build in order to accommodate the necessary fast-track schedule. This allowed for a more transparent process that brings together client, architect, builder, and subcontractors as active participants in the design process.
The new dormitory seeks to enhance the current and future campus pedestrian circulation. Taking cues from the university’s master plan, the housing space rises up from the ground to allow passage through the site, which enables a stronger connection between residential and campus areas of the university.
A cast concrete plinth mediates the sloping site topography and establishes the entry sequence for the dormitory. The transparency of the first floor exposes the shared program elements for the building, which include: gathering/ recreation space, mail and package room, vending, administrative services, and laundry area. The corner areas of each floor contain quiet reading areas and a shared kitchen/ meeting space. Mechanical space, maintenance shops and bicycle storage is accommodated within the plinth.
The bedroom floors consist of four-bed suites with a shared living room. The layout configuration allows the suites to be mirrored in plan regardless of location. The exterior panel configuration reflects the location of the living rooms on the interior, adding variety to both the facade and the access corridor.
Systems selections were evaluated based on speed and constructability. The structural system is precast concrete plank set onto a steel frame. The exterior wall panels are shop-fabricated and were placed on the building as a finished, water-tight assembly consisting of brick, aluminum, glass and ribbed metal.
Mark’s Café is part of the Van Pelt-Dietrich Library Center at the University of Pennsylvania. Housing over 3,000,000 books, the library is an important student destination for both research and study. The café is located on the ground floor and provides both indoor and outdoor seating. It’s a place where young people can refuel, meet fellow students, hold intellectual discussion, coordinate group projects, and meet informally with faculty.
Named after Mark Goldstein (C’83), Penn alumnus and son of Library Overseer Bernard Goldstein (W’53), the Café opened in 2003.
The creation of this new interactive space within the library provides a place for the free exchange of ideas in a more casual setting. The space, defined by a minimal enclosure, is fabricated as a modified möbius. The continuity of the möbius is implied by a normative shearing at logical points of access and transition. The enclosure provides an implied spatial boundary, while maintaining a presence of “the beyond”. This foreground/background experience mimics the iterative process of learning in the present through tacit observation and interaction, while always evaluating and referencing the context of codified knowledge of the library.
The möbius extends out from the café to greet visitors from the elevator lobby and Goldstein Undergraduate Study Center. The opposite end of the möbius dematerializes into a sheet of water, providing a medium for rear-projection at night.
It is the intent of the library to create a “cool-tech” environment, where cutting-edge technology is wrapped in a soft enclosure. The priority of the donor is to provide outstanding, European coffee, enabling students to spend longer hours in an environment of study and inquiry.
The space is technologically advanced and fully wireless. Students and faculty can proceed with their work in the café by utilizing wireless laptops both indoors and outdoors.
The café opens directly to the outdoors, reclaiming an existing underused sunken courtyard that faces College Green. This area produces an additional seating area that alots for twenty-five people.
This 200,000 square foot regional operations center facilitated the consolidation of several Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shields of New Jersey customer service facilities in and around Monmouth County, New Jersey. Developed by Commercial Realty and Resources Corp., the new facility was arranged in two wings that share a common entry core. The south wing accommodates a 30,000 square foot data center, a 15,000 square foot training center, and an employee dining facility. The north wing is primarily allocated to customer service groups supporting Horizon’s subscriber interface. This was a fast track project completed in 2004.
The building’s north and south wing contain nearly 100,000 square feet of office space, with each wing encompossing a fully functioning data center facility. Connecting the two wings is a three story glass box that unfolds to wrap the facade of the respective building wings. A series of floating bridges and a cantilevered staircases connect the various floors of the wings. A grand steel staircase hovers within the soaring three story height of the main lobby of the building. The full height glass wall allows for those within the lobby to overlook the landscaped dining terrace and a stand of existing trees that remain within the cradle of the two wings, which draws an element of greenery into the building.
Two significant conceptual explorations gave form to the design for this church— “re-pitching the tent” and the four devotions of St. Aloysius.
“Repitching the tent”, expressed in the delicate soaring roof lines, evokes the concept of simple worship. The roof is drawn from Old Testament references to pitching of the tent as a place for worship, and New Testament revival references to re-pitching the tent. The metaphor of a tent yields a building rich in concept and formal expression.
The Four Devotions of St. Aloysius – Blessed Sacrament, Passion of Our Lord, Love of Our Lady, and Choir of Angels – sit adjacent to the large concrete buttresses that anchor the roof.
The entry sequence exploits the social implications of gathering for worship. The relationship to parking dictates a singular approach through a series of increasingly intimate spaces that prepare congregants for worship in communion with their fellow parishioners. An intimate courtyard is formed between the gathering space and the daily chapel, which allows viewers to visually connect with the sanctuary prior to entering the building. Passing through the gathering space, which connects the new church to the existing, one passes the Baptismal Font while entering the sanctuary. The Baptismal is located axially opposite the altar and the Adoration Chapel. This relationship connects the congregation to both the Baptismal and the Blessed Sacrament upon entering and departing the sanctuary.
Radiant underfloor heating was employed to create a comfortable environment within the large open space of the sanctuary. In addition, extended overhangs around the building reduce the cooling load by reduction of heat build-up due to solar heat gain. Large infiltration basins and cisterns adjacent to the structure capture and filter the storm-water from the building’s roof.