This project divides a once stale space into a youthful lounge atmosphere. The design approach focused on dramatic lighting and creating small gathering spaces partitioned by light. Instead of overused school colors or the typical BEARS mascot, Dake | Wells Architecture’s approach used the light partition as a metaphor for the gooey, amber, transparent bear treat, “HONEY”. The qualities of honey create an undeniable, yet subtle relationship to the University while making the space special and memorable. Simply reorganizing light created variations in mood to define different areas of the program.
A desire for sustainable strategies and a limited renovation budget of $11/sqf informed our solution. The honey wall partitions work to define space and create privacy while framing views and establishing a dramatic mood through the use of amber light. Salvaged light fixtures were reorganized and the existing acoustical ceiling grid was left in place, except for a portion removed in the honey wall zone to establish hierarchy in the space. Steel plate shelves identify places for socialization and frame views through the wall. This dramatic space has re-established itself as a social node on campus.