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Goldfarb School of Nursing at Barnes-Jewish College, Student Quadrangle

Creating inviting public spaces for a top-tier nursing school

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Goldfarb School of Nursing at Barnes-Jewish College, Student Quadrangle

St. Louis, Missouri

To achieve the strategic goals defined by the nursing school, replacement of their outdated facilities was imperative. In siting and designing the new 105,000 sf building, it was important to provide a prominent image for the College of Nursing within the Washington University – Barnes-Jewish Medical Center campus. As a result, the building rises five stories, with a highly visible façade and signage facing three major streets. An enclosed courtyard creates a student quadrangle within the medical campus and sets the building off from its rigid, urban surroundings. 

Because this replacement nursing school is on an isolated site away from the larger medical campus, it was critical that the building and the site be configured in such a way to make a visual and physical link to the campus. Consideration of the needs of the nursing students as they travel from the hospital site to the school during both day and night was paramount in the design of the quadrangle. The predominant flow of pedestrian circulation from the campus towards the new building led to the sweeping plaza and seating spaces of the courtyard design. A range of inviting public spaces developed: an open green is an inviting place for study and gathering on nice days; a sunny, outdoor café extends from the student commons within the building; intimate seating spaces are created under a grove of Ginkgo trees and on the terrace steps disappearing into the open green. Strategically placed landscaping further softens the urban views from within each classroom.

Status: Completed 2007

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