The Security of Higher Education Design
For buildings on campuses of higher education, safety is a paramount concern not only for students, but for educators, parents and the larger community, as well. Intuitive strategies must be integrated into the campus design in ways that maintain both high levels of safety and high levels of design.
Technology Square is a 1,100,000 square-foot expansion of the Georgia Institute of Technology’s campus in Atlanta, Georgia. Set in the bustling urban fabric of midtown, tvsdesign enhanced safety by utilizing the project’s location to its advantage.
The design team used the natural, urban elements to provide an observable buffer zone between the whole city dynamic and the interior learning environments. Strategically placed points of entry also associate student activity with the larger environment thereby keeping them secure inside the campus buildings. To connect Technology Square to the larger Georgia Tech campus, a new, 5th Street Bridge was built with extra wide sidewalks, additional lighting and park-like trees and plantings.
“The objective was to create an environment where people want to be,” says Bob Balke, AIA, LEED, Principal at tvsdesign. “A place where then can observe one another, thereby passively increasing the safety of all.”
The interior campus of Florida State College at Jacksonville was designed as a learning village with spaces organized into smaller neighborhoods and connected by pedestrian ’streets’. The design team was able to group all academic functions under one roof, securing all students in a single space. Entrances were consolidated and purposefully placed to provide the most convenient connection for students between parking and their learning centers. Enrollment was greater than anticipated when the building opened and the campus still maintains its strong reputation for innovation and as a secure place to continue one’s education.