Pierson and Davenport Colleges, Yale University

Medaille College is a dynamic college committed to providing a diverse, thriving experience for its students. To achieve their goals, the Yazdani Studio of Cannon Design conceived this building as a linear pavilion that would be used as the new ‘front door’ of the Medaille campus. From a user’s standpoint the base is a transparent glass box, allowing views into and through the building, thus prompting interaction and observation.

Volumes of program, breaking down the interior volume of space in plan and section, find themselves between the existing ground plane and the ‘green’ roof plane of the building. Perforations and folds in the roof allow sunlight into the levels below and help connect the spaces below with any activities that might happen above. The 120,000 sf building contains a 1,400 seat basketball arena, a library, information commons with computer areas, a dining hall, and a student housing ‘pod’ containing 100 beds with lounges and Resident Advisor apartments every other floor. Room views and exposure are maximized due to the shaping of the building, while the exterior façade is comprised of colored panels, mimicking the colors of nearby Delaware Park, a National Historic Register District designed by Frederick Law Olmstead.

The building fuses together interrelated programs, which originally were in disparate locations on the campus. By combining all programs and activities of student life — sleeping, dining, socializing, playing, studying, and working — the building becomes the hub for interaction and community, creating a focal point that will become the catalyst for further development on the campus.


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