The mixed-use Barnard College Nexus connects a variety of uses—including offices, a cafeteria, events and meeting rooms, and computer facilities—and links the campus with the surrounding urban environment of New York. The glazed façades of the 110,000-square-foot building allow views from inside the building up and down the campus corridor and onto Broadway, which flanks the building's west side; the glazing also allows for views through the building from the outside. A sleek and modern update to a largely historic campus, the building was constrained by zoning that limited it to a five-story, 85-foot-high streetscape, with an additional story on the campus side. A series of slipped, double-height atria, rising throughout the height of the building and shifting laterally toward the quad side of the building with each level, creates a diagonal corridor throughout the structure, allowing light into the core of the building and providing another sightline axis. These atria are painted a vibrant green that can be seen from the street, a playful detail that highlights the flow of movement in the space. Inside, vertically patterned glass accents the main circulation routes.

The façade treatment is a clever nod to the brick and terracotta that dominate the other campus buildings. Vertical panels of translucent white and reddish-hued glass recall the patterns of a brick façade, and a range of colors, patterns, and depths gives the building the slightly mottled appearance of natural stone and masonry. Juror Coleman Coker noted that “the building has this reddish color, even at night. And that alone is an interesting and compelling thing to do in a minimalist way.” Translucent shadow boxes in the façade catch and reflect light, giving the treatment a depth and luminosity that go beyond that of a standard curtain wall. Thomas Phifer appreciated the repeated use of vertical glass elements, as well as the visible green atria: “This façade is a reflection of what's happening inside the building; it's almost like a cross section.”

Marion Weiss & Michael A. Manfredi
Marion Weiss & Michael A. Manfredi

PROJECT Barnard College Nexus


ARCHITECT Weiss/Manfredi, New York—Marion Weiss, Michael A. Manfredi (design partners, pictured); Michael Harshman (project manager); Clifton Balch, Yehre Suh (project architects); Patrick Armacost, Michael Blasberg, Linh Dan Do, Sandy Ewen, Kian Goh, Hamilton Hadden, Patrick Hazari, Todd Hoehn, Anastasia Kostrominova, Justin Kwok, Lee Lim, Kim Nun, Nick Shipes, Michael Steiner (project team); Patrick Armacost, Kian Goh, Jason Ro, Yehre Suh, Tae-Young Yoon (competition scheme)



ENGINEERS Jaros, Baum & Bolles Consulting Engineers (M/E/P/FP and vertical transport); Severud Engineers (structural); Langan (civil)


CONSULTANTS R.A. Heintges Architects Consultants (curtain wall); Brandston Partners (Lighting Design); Cerami & Associates with T.M Technology Partners (AV/IT/general acoustics/ security); Ricca Newmark Design (food service); Jeanne Giordano (retail); AMIS (cost estimator); Viridian Energy and Environmental (sustainability); Fisher Dachs (theater); Jaffe Holden Acoustics (theater acoustics)


CLIENT Barnard College

COST $42 million

SIZE 110,000 square feet