While I would have preferred something with a few more floors, creating an urban edge at the sidewalk is an improvement over the vast setback of the 1960s era dorm. Once the nearby Masterson’s block redevelopment gets underway, the area will be on its way to becoming a sort of urban center. Now if we can just figure out what to do with that block in between with the parking lots and shopping center.
Branden founded Broken Sidewalk in 2008 while practicing architecture in Louisville. He continued the site for seven years while living in New York City, returning to Louisville in 2016. Branden is a graduate of the College of Architecture at Washington University in St. Louis, and has covered architecture, design, and urbanism for The Architect's Newspaper, Designers & Books, Inhabitat, and the American Institute of Architects.
This is a decent little intervention project. Good analysis as always Brandon, and I agree that a few more stories would have improved it’s relationship to the surrounding context. It’s as if they chose the cruddy little strip mall across the street as their metric instead of the Fraternity Row Houses.
I just wish UofL would start to think of itself as an ‘Urban University’ with respect to all of it’s design and planning strategies. They have a great (albeit challenging due to rail lines and interstate highways) location next to one of the largest and best preserved Victorian era neighborhoods in the world, and they settle for mostly mediocre and at times, downright terrible architecture – especially for it’s housing.
In my opinion, while the University has done a better job architecturally with it’s academic buildings of late, it’s really missed some golden opportunities to improve it’s overall environment with it’s Residence Halls; Billy Minardi and Community Hall are especially terrible, and it’s affiliated Student Housing developments; University Park Apartments (Eastern Parkway and Preston) and The Province (a wee bit of Olde Hurstbourne in Old Louisville).
I’ll cut UofL some slack on University Park, it was done in the mid- 80’s, and not much good architecturally came out of that decade. But the recently occupied ‘The Province’ is just terrible on so many levels, that it literally makes me cringe when I think about the lost opportunity. Does the University really feel creating a gated, suburban community is going to help it’s rebranding efforts to position itself as a premier Urban University?
I understand that with the acquisition of the Kentucky Trailer site south of the Speed Campus, that UofL is undergoing a formal replanning process. It’s my hope that the Board of Trustees or whatever University governing body is in charge of the process will study what the University of Cincinnati has managed to accomplish on their campus over the last 20 years – and push for something just as transformative.
There is a master plan for the University of Louisville campus released last year which I think you will find interesting.
http://louisville.edu/uoflmagazine/winter2010/happening/provost-presents-belknap-master-plan-to-trustees.html this is a link to the overview.
Also the slideshow is very informative.. http://louisville.edu/updc/belknap-campus-master-plan/Willihnganz BOT presentation 11 12 2009.pptx
Thanks for the link. I hadn’t realized they were that far along in the process.
Looks good in concept – which I understand this was the concept design presentation. Hopefully they can tighten up as needed and move forward.
Anyone else out there have any additional information?
You can’t keep building buildings and not providing parking, for better or worse, it IS a commuter campus. In my 8 years on campus (two degrees), I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of meals I ate on campus, couldn’t afford to eat there. I ate breakfast before I got there, and left campus before lunch, most of the time, because I had to go to work. A few semesters I flipped it and took night classes instead, and again, ate before I went there. A few of the times I would have liked to have the option to eat on campus, but didn’t have the time, by the time I left work, got to campus and parked, there was no time!
Is anyone else having trouble opening the Power Point in Nathan’s link? I have tried downloading OpenOffice to open it on a Mac and, when that didn’t work, I attempted to open it with a PC that has an updated version of Power Point but that also did not work. Am very curious to see the file as the other link on nathan’s post was somewhat vague about details. Is there anywhere else to view it? Can anyone provide some deatils about it if they did mange to open the file?
If you are looking for more information about the UofL Master Plan, this Friday (April 2) the Urban Design Studio will have the plans on display in their gallery and there will be people on hand from UofL to answer questions. The exhibit will be from 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm at the Urban Design Studio, 507 South Third Street, Louisville. For more information on the event you can check it out here: http://udstudio.org
I wrote an article about this dining hall in February. Its construction was delayed by weather, and it is scheduled to open by summer.
hey brandon, just thought you might get a kick out of this story i heard today: