March 17, 2005
Vol. 24 No. 12

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    Architect chosen for new residential complex has design experience in campus facilities

    By Josh Schonwald
    News Office

    The architectural firm Goody Clancy has been selected to design the proposed $104 million south campus residence hall and dining services complex, which will provide 900 new beds—650 to replace the Shoreland Hall beds when the building closes in 2008, and an additional 250 beds to account for higher demand for student housing.

    Goody Clancy, an award-winning Boston-based firm with a specialty in educational facilities, was selected to design the complex, which will be adjacent to Burton-Judson Hall. The March announcement is the culmination of a yearlong programming, planning and selection process that involved evaluating proposals from 18 of the country’s leading architectural firms.

    Elaine Lockwood Bean, Associate Vice President for Facilities Services, said Goody Clancy was selected for a variety of reasons, among them, their recognized excellence in design, their history of working with educational institutions and their reputation for good client relations.

    “They’re student housing experts,” Bean said. “And they work closely with clients to help determine and achieve their goals.” As a final stage of the process, a University search committee visited sites designed by three finalist firms. “We were impressed by the depth of Goody Clancy’s architectural experience, and how well they solved the planning challenges at Case Western,” she added.

    A 115-person firm that includes architects, interior designers, graphic designers and urban planners, Goody Clancy specializes in institutional design for a wide range of purposes, including student housing and dining facilities. The firm has designed buildings for more than two-dozen universities, including Dartmouth College, Harvard University, Princeton University and Yale University.

    Widely regarded in architectural circles for pioneering civic and socially responsible design, Goody Clancy received high praise from Chicago Tribune architectural critic Blair Kamin, who wrote, “Goody Clancy’s enlightened leadership has steered both architects and architects of public policy in a new, more humanistic direction.”

    What also appealed to the search committee was the firm’s successful record of working in urban environments. A winner of numerous awards for urban design, Goody Clancy, which will partner with the Chicago-based firm Campbell Tiu Campbell, has worked in highly constrained urban sites, requiring great sensitivity to balancing existing architecture and the needs of surrounding communities.

    The firm also has designed several architecturally innovative housing projects, including Tent City, an affordable housing complex in downtown Boston, and the redeveloped Cabrini Green site on Chicago’s near North Side.

    Bean said Goody Clancy’s experience in urban settings makes the firm an ideal candidate for the project. Because the new building will be surrounded by several distinctive architectural styles—Mies Van der Rohe’s School of Social Service Administration building, Eero Saarinen’s Law School building, the Gothic stone edifice of Burton-Judson and apartment buildings in Woodlawn—the project will challenge the design team. “They have an exceptionally varied palette to work with,” Bean said. Goody Clancy is expected to provide schematic design sketches by July.

    The University evaluated student housing preferences last year about programming for the new residence halls. Focus groups were queried and students were surveyed online. The data resulted in a conceptual plan of building elements that provide the balance of solitude and community that University undergraduates desire for the new facility. Cheryl Gutman, Deputy Dean of Housing and Dining Services and Assistant Dean of the College, provided details of the ongoing student advisory group who will provide feedback throughout the design process.

    Steve Klass, Vice President and Dean of Students in the University, emphasized that the design phase of the building also will involve ongoing consultation with members of the community. “There is lots of room built into the schedule for input from the community throughout this process.”

    In addition to the 525-seat dining hall, said Gutman, a small retail unit, likely to be a combination café and convenience store, is to be included in the complex.

    Ground breaking on the site currently is scheduled for the fall of 2006.