Tuesday, November 06, 2018

UIS Student Union wins excellence in design award from the American Institute of Architects

The University of Illinois Springfield’s new Student Union building was honored with an excellence in design award by the American Institute of Architects (AIA) during the Prairie Chapter Design Meeting and Awards Program in Bloomington, Illinois on Nov. 1, 2018.

The building was designed by Workshop Architects of Milwaukee, Wisconsin & Dewberry of Peoria, Illinois to LEED® Gold guidelines, with sustainable features which include a green roof, energy efficient lighting, rainwater reclamation system and radiant flooring in select areas.

The two-story, 50,000-square-foot student union anchors the campus’s south quad, providing campus dining services, a Starbucks coffee shop, a ballroom with seating for up to 450 people and a Student Leadership Center that houses student government, volunteer offices and workspaces for student organizations.

Since the building’s opening in January 2018, the Student Union has helped to energize campus life, creating a vibrant social environment in the heart of campus.

In evaluating the Student Union’s design, the nationally-renowned design jury commented, “The project offers a modern, fresh and spacious interactive space. The proposed program with flexible work spaces and overlapped activities seems very appropriate as a social catalyst for students on campus. The goals of the project are noble, to create a central place for what’s otherwise a commuter campus. I think they have done a great job. The building is a striking, inviting sculptural form. Its plan is well organized and the volumes within the building – for student government and the Starbucks pavilion, are nicely scaled and inviting.”

According to AIA, projects were judged by measuring the architect’s performance against each project’s potential and not against other projects. Decisions were based upon the overall excellence of design in various categories.

For more information on the 2018 Prairie Chapter Design Awards, visit www.aia.org/prairie.

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