Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Architects • The jury was tiring of the all-glass building trend when it paused on the University of Oregon John E. Jaqua Academic Center for Student Athletes. Zimmer Gunsul Frasca Architects transformed a parking lot on the edge of campus into a glazed structure with four nearly identical façades situated in a reflecting pool. A custom curtain-wall assembly—a layer of monolithic glass separated from the interior insulating glass by a stainless steel screen—wraps the perfectly square floor plan.
Crystalline and elegant on the outside, the project offers 40,000 square feet of state-of-the-art learning facilities on the inside: an auditorium, study areas, offices, a library, a computer lab, and student lounges. Natural light bathes the carefully detailed and furnished spaces. Innovative art installations and eye-catching environmental graphics celebrate the achievements of UO alums—jocks and bookworms alike. “It’s a project that follows through on the interior,” juror Scott Kilbourn noted, with an unwitting sports reference.