September 12, 2016

On Monday, September 12th, 2016 TGDA attended a celebratory dinner at the new Dining Commons at the University of Chicago. In attendance were representative from the direct collaborators on the project including but not limited to The University of Chicago, Mortenson Construction, Studio Gang, and David Mason and Associates. This was the last chance for the design team to experience the project before students are admitted and access is restricted. TGDA is thrilled with the outcome of the project and would like commend Studio Gang Architects and rest of the team on a job well done!

The landscape for The University of Chicago North Residence Hall & Dining Commons is designed to welcome students, faculty, and residents by integrating the community with campus life. Situated at the entry to the campus, at the corner of 55th and University Avenue, the site serves as a gateway to the University drawing students, visitors, and community members into the site’s diverse, contemporary spaces. Retail amenities, an outdoor café, and robust plantings move people through the landscape. The café offers outdoor seating for the restaurant and retail, which is open to both students and visitors.

At the center of the new “quad,” the Garden Circle, depicted above, serves as a central space for outdoor classes and study groups. Dynamic amphitheater seating, constructed from owner-salvaged sandstone, provides space for informal events, student gatherings, and people-watching. The path encompassing the circle encourages soothing circumambulation along the gardens for busy students looking for a break from studies.

As a contemporary, multifunctional landscape, TGDA addressed stormwater concerns through utilizing native species and extensive and intensive green roofs to capture water as it falls on the site. Perennial gardens and porous pavement are also used throughout to increase overall site permeability. As a result, the University of Chicago Residence Hall landscape emphasizes sustainable vegetation, materials, and practices while simultaneously providing a dynamic, vibrant space for the entire community.

To see more pictures and learn more about please see arch daily's review of the project.