May 12, 2023

Finalist and Jurors of the SGH Concepts and Dri-Design Competition

“UNveiled” is an adaptive re-use and renovation project which tackles Oldfather Hall’s high-potential yet underutilized spaces. By careful applications of architectural subtraction, this project brings new life to a prominent educational building in the core of University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s downtown campus.

This project was completed as part of Professor Jeffrey L. Day’s ARCH 411 studio.

Jurors notes: The jury celebrates the project’s sophisticated design strategies of subtraction and reinvention. By carefully bringing new life to the existing building, the project renders old outdated spaces anew.”

Oldfather Hall is a twelve-story higher education building located in the University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s (UNL) downtown campus. Built in the late 1960’s, this building is rich in educational opportunities and is home to five departments: Global Integrative Studies, History, Political Science, Modern Language, and Sociology. Located at the center of UNL’s academic core, Oldfather’s abundance in program and connection to Burnett and Bessey Hall make it an ideal candidate for the development of a collaborative learning program.

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln’s comprehensive master plan for campus design and development designates Oldfather as part of Site 7: the proposed “Burnett-Oldfather-Bessey Collaborative.” This master plan envisions a collaborative multi-purpose learning and study space located within this site with the following goals in mind: the addition of new interactive and collaborative education programs, the creation of a transparent facade to reveal collaborative functions, an emphasis on interior qualities of openness, and the optimization of new circulation pathways, efficient energy usage and daylighting, all consolidated within a single location.

This project re-imagines the architecture of collaborative learning through means of adaptive re-use rather than through a building addition. Specifically, this project proposes replacing Oldfather’s unused classrooms with collaborative programs on a spectrum ranging from formal to informal.

This project was completed under Professor Jeffrey Day’s ARCH 411 studio theme under “Subtraction.” This studio explored various methods of using architectural subtraction as the primary means for transforming and extending the usefulness of existing buildings. Subtraction is also explored as a strategy for sustainable development through adaptive re-use.

Oldfather Hall, proposed exterior alteration on east elevation. Existing condition illustrated on the right; proposed façade left. Image by E.G.T.

Oldfather Hall, proposed primary entrance. East courthyard. Image by by E.G.T.

Oldfather Hall, proposed renovated hallway. Third-floor hallway, looking west. Image by E.G.T.

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