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Kent State Breaks Ground on WEISS/MANFREDI-Designed Center for Architecture

© WEISS/MANFREDI (Competition Renderings)
© WEISS/MANFREDI (Competition Renderings)

Ohio’s Kent State is set to break ground tomorrow on its New Center for Architecture and Environmental Design. The $48 million building was designed by New York-based WEISS/MANFREDI following a collaboration with Richard L. Bowen & Associates which won first in the project’s national competition

The design, dubbed the “Kent State Design Loft,” transforms the notion of a continuous studio loft into a three-tiered structure that unites all the college’s programs, including construction management, under one roof. 

New images of the building, after the break.

WEISS / MANFREDI to Design Kent State's New, $40 Million Architecture Building

© WEISS/MANFREDI  Architecture/Landscape/Urbanism
© WEISS/MANFREDI Architecture/Landscape/Urbanism

WEISS / MANFREDI has been announced as winner of the international competition to design a new College of Architecture and Environmental Design for Kent State University in Ohio. The New York-based practice, in collaboration with the local architect of record Richard L. Bowen & Associates, was one of four national finalists selected from a competitive list of 37 applicants. The winning proposal, dubbed the Kent State Design Loft, transforms the notion of a continuous studio loft into a three-tiered structure that opens to the city, connects to the public esplanade and surrounding landscape, and provides an abundance of creatively designed, flexible learning spaces that can be easily transformed to accommodate design crits, exhibitions and events. “We are captivated by the potential for this project to become an innovative incubator for the arts and an internationally legible destination for the University,” said Marion Weiss and Michael Manfredi. The architect’s project description after the break…

Proposals Unveiled for Kent State's new Architecture College

 Richard L. Bowen + Associates Inc. proposal; Courtesy Kent State University
Richard L. Bowen + Associates Inc. proposal; Courtesy Kent State University

Yesterday, the shortlisted teams for Kent State’s new, $40 million College of Architecture and Environmental Design pitched their designs to the Kent community. From “simple and functional to splendidly provocative”, these proposals offer a range of innovative solutions that will satisfy Kent’s mission to create a modern campus that offers an outstanding academic experience and enriches the greater community of Kent, Ohio.

The four finalists, which were selected from 37 international teams, were challenged to design a 122,000 square foot, sustainable exemplar, possibly capable of achieving net-zero energy, that unites Kent State’s architecture program under one roof, while inspiring interdisciplinary collaboration within flexible learning spaces.

Get a sneak peak of each proposal after the break.

Shortlist announced for Kent State's New Architecture Building

The final four, seen below, will present their proposals, along with sustainability data and a cost estimate, in January of 2013 to a selection community and the public. Bialosky + Partners Architects (NY and Cleveland), in association with Architecture Research Office (NY) Richard L. Bowen + Associates Inc. (Cleveland), in association with Weiss/Manfredi (NY) The Collaborative Inc. (Toledo, Ohio), in association with the Miller Hull Partnership (Seattle) Westlake Reed Leskosky (Cleveland, Phoenix, Washington, NY and LA) “This design competition has been an exciting process, and the anticipation only grows as we prepare for the final steps,” said Douglas Steidl, dean of the College of Architecture and Environmental Design at Kent State. “We perceive this as a building that will focus on the future, be a building that sets a new standard for collaboration between constituencies and reflects a high level of respect for the built environment while respecting the natural systems of our planet. This building will serve future students, faculty and the community with vitality for decades.” While the sustainability data is analyzed and the cost estimate will be reviewed by independent sources, the presentation materials will be further evaluated by the jury to determine the winning design scheme. The winner of the competition is expected to be announced in February 2013. “The location along the Kent State University Esplanade extension allows the new architecture building to be a physical reminder of the process used by designers to take an idea and translate it into a practical, tangible construction that benefits society,” Steidl said. “This will be the link between Kent State and the Kent community, both physically and metaphorically.”

2011 matR Project: "The Passage"

© Victoria Capranica
© Victoria Capranica

A team of graduate students recently created a temporary installation on the Kent State University, Kent campus in Ohio. The project grew out of an internal challenge in the matR design competition. Designed by graduate students Brian Thoma, Carl, Veith, Victoria, Capranica, Matt Veith, and Griffin Morris, the tunnel-like structure called “The Passage” was a study to support the conceptualization and actualization of innovative and experimental material research. The students created the initial form in Rhinoceros with a couple Grasshopper definitions as a waffle structure of 26 vertical ribs and 24 horizontal struts. More images and information after the break.

Kent State CAED 2011 Spring Lecture Series

Upcoming April lectures at Kent State’s CAED will include Michael Meredith of MOS Architects, winners of MoMA’s P.S.1. 2009. Also featured will be University of Kentucky’s Dean of the College of Architecture Michael Speaks and Richard Jackson of the UCLA School of Public Health.

Kent State CAED 2011 Spring Lecture Series

Kent State College of Architecture and Environmental Design recently shared their Spring Lecture series with us. This series includes speakers such as Elena Manferdini of Atelier Manferdini. All lectures are free admission and begin at 7pm, locations vary.