In 2013, a new Science and Health Careers Center will radiate beside the lake at the heart of Oakton Community College’s Des Plaines, Illinois campus.
As a new gateway to the campus, the 93,000-square-foot center celebrates the site’s natural highlights, and preserves pathways into the campus. It features flexible, light-filled classrooms and labs, enhanced technology, and abundant lab preparation and storage space. Design highlights:
• Piers raise the building seven-and-a-half feet above ground in response to the adjacent flood plain; during floods, water will flow beneath the building.
• The tiered design strategy keeps open pathways into the campus, reduces the facility’s footprint, provides a self-shading façade, and shelters an outdoor plaza beside the lake.
• The glass-dominated west façade with integrated exterior operable blinds maximizes views to the lake while controlling heat gain, and serves as a luminary to the remainder of the campus.
• A transparent cascading staircase and third-story corridor offer optimal views of the campus’s natural highlights, as well as a sculpture park.