Campbell Sports Center designed by Steven Holl Architects began construction over the weekend. Complimenting the existing Baker Athletics Complex, the Campbell Sports Center will create a necessary and inviting new gateway to Columbia University’s complex at its location on the corner of West 218th street and Broadway. The five-story, 48,000 sqf facility will include an auditorium, strength training and conditioning rooms, offices for varsity sports, a hospitality suite, and student-athlete study rooms. Led by Steven Holl and Chris McVoy, the Campbell sports Center is scheduled to open in fall 2012. Steven Holl shared, “We are honored to collaborate with Dianne Murphy and Columbia Facilities in creating this new state of the art athletics facility. Its inviting architecture indicates the invigorating presence and future of intercollegiate athletics at Columbia University.”
The Sports Center aims at serving the mind, the body and the mind/body. The design concept “points on the ground, lines in space”—like field play diagrams used for football, soccer, baseball—develops from point foundations on the sloping site. Just as points and lines in diagrams yield the physical push and pull on the field, the building’s elevations push and pull in space. External stairs, which serve as “lines in space,” and terraces extend the field play onto and into the building and give views from the upper levels over the Baker Athletics Complex and Manhattan with the Empire State and Chrysler Buildings in the distance. At night the building is up-lit with glowing light on its Columbia-blue aluminum soffits.