Westminster College, Wallace H. Coulter Science Center
Westminster’s Coulter Science Center combines a three-story addition and major renovation of an existing lab building. The challenge for this project was to take a utilitarian 1960’s era “box” disconnected from the surrounding campus and to create a more commanding presence from every direction. The resulting new building respects the geometry and materials of the old one, while adding drama to the entry and connecting to the surrounding terrain. The entry consists of a glass-roofed atrium inserted between the addition (housing new lab and office space) and the existing building (renovated for classrooms). It serves as the building hub, gathering space, and point of vertical circulation. Throughout, space not dedicated to classrooms and labs becomes part of the learning environment. Corridors and alcoves are designed to encourage students and faculty to cross paths at every opportunity, featuring built-in seating, marker boards, and display space.