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James I Swenson Science Building University of Minnesota, Duluth Architect: Ross Barney Architects Location: Duluth, Minnesota, USA Completion: 2006 GFA: 9,000 m2 Photography: Steve Hall, Hedrich Blessing, Brett Groehler & University of Minnesota Duluth

The new James I Swenson Science Building for the University of Minnesota at Duluth is situated on one of the main corridors through the 100-hectare campus. The site for the new facility creates links between the teaching and research functions of the Science Department and the academic and residential areas of the campus. The port of Duluth and Lake Superior provide a spectacular backdrop for this state-of-the-art laboratory facility located in this harsh northern climate. This research and teaching laboratory with support spaces for programmes in Chemistry, Fresh Water Research and Biology emphasises healthy and productive work environments. The 15-metre-wide lab building provides the opportunity for daylight to spill into the research and teaching laboratories. Teaching labs are located along the main pedestrian path of the building. Support spaces are communal and happen near the intersection of research and teaching labs. Research labs are defined by a single corridor down the middle. The new facility provides space for sixteen undergraduate instructional laboratories for 2,100 students and an additional sixteen research laboratories for faculty and post doctoral researchers.

East elevations

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The two-storey space at the intersection of the research and teaching labs serves as an interaction space for students, faculty and staff. The space is marked with a 12-metre-high light collecting element. A “picture” window opposite the element looks towards Duluth and Lake Superior as well as the new outdoor water resources research classroom. Sustainable and native materials are used, including brick, stone and wood. An engineered wetland provides a “front yard” for the building and laboratory for wild rice research. An Art in Architecture sculpture by John David Mooney sits on the front lawn.

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1. Aerial view 2. The façades are a combination of materials such as brick and stone 3. Front view 4. Back view

1. Western view 2. The two-storey space at the intersection of the research and teaching labs 3. Glazing walls and dome extensively used 4. The intersection space facilitating communication

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University Architecture  
University Architecture  

U N IV E R S IT Y A R C H IT E C T U R E DESIGN MEDIA PUBLISHING LIMITED DESIGN MEDIA PUBLISHING LIMITED UNIVERSITY ARCHITECTURE DESIGN MEDI...

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