Ennead Architects has released images of the new Engineering Education and Research Center for the University of Texas at Austin’s Cockrell School of Engineering. Currently under construction, the 433,000 square foot (40,200 square meter) building will house undergraduate education, interdisciplinary graduate research and two distinct engineering departments, and will become a new hub of activity at the edge of campus. The design takes advantage of a unique section featuring stacked atrium and outdoor spaces to serve a variety of educational and public functions.
In reflection of the school’s area of study, the building has been designed as a showcase for engineering, with an exposed concrete structural frame and steel truss systems, bridges, a glass roof, large-span sun shading systems and a centerpiece spiral staircase.
The educational program has been divided into two limestone-clad towers containing labs, offices and work spaces for the different engineering departments. The wings are connected by a triple-height public atrium capped with a folded glass and steel clear-span roof structure that also becomes the base of a 5-story outdoor volume, shielded from the sun by a screen hung between the two towers. Glass and steel bridges connect the building’s upper levels along the eastern and western facades.
Fronting the atrium is the National Instruments Student Project Center, which provides 23,000 square feet (2,100 square meters) of maker space to undergraduate students, putting a strong emphasis on design, fabrication and rapid-prototyping early in their educations. The majority of lab spaces in the two-story Project Center feature floor-to-ceiling glazing, putting student work on display for anyone passing through the building.
The Engineering Education and Research Center is scheduled to be completed in 2017.
LocationUniversity of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX, United States
Design PartnerTodd Schliemann
Management PartnerKevin McClurkan
Project DesignerAlex O’Briant
Project Manager/Project ArchitectEmily Kirkland
Project Architect, DesignMegan Miller
Team MembersZach Olczak, Jena Rimkus
MEPAffiliated Engineers, Inc.
LaboratoryJacobs Consultancy, GPR Planners Collaborative
LandscapeColeman & Associates
TheaterFisher Dachs Associates
TechnologyDatacom Design Group
Food ServiceWorrell Design Group
Cost Estimating/ConstructabilityGarza Program Management
Construction ManagerHensel Phelps Construction Co
PhotographsCourtesy of Ennead Architects