University of British Columbia, Buchanan Complex Revitalization

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Project Info
University of British Columbia, Buchanan Complex Revitalization
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
Completion Date: 2010
Square Footage: 163,525
LEED-NC Gold Certified

Built 50 years ago, the Buchanan Complex remains critical to the vitality and function of the University of British Columbia campus. As the primary facility for the Faculty of Arts—the largest faculty at UBC—the school witnesses an average enrollment of 12,000 students per year.

The complex consists of several concrete-frame buildings that are surrounded by masonry infill walls. Strategically navigating the site's topography, the walls meander to create a series of open and covered courtyard spaces where lush, mature vegetation has grown to form relaxing outdoor 'rooms' for retreat and study.

Perkins+Will led a complete overhaul of the complex's existing mechanical, electrical, and seismic systems. Interiors were also fully re-configured to reflect current teaching techniques, including increased flexibility and more office spaces for graduate student research. Combining art student services into a convenient ground-level office zone, the revitalized interior includes a co-op and student guidance and counselling areas. The integration of graduate students with faculty furthers the significance of the graduate experience and enhances the faculty's retention abilities.

Through an increased number of around-the-clock social spaces and a new cafe, the complex is witnessing a renewed connection to the broader campus and plays an active role within the University of British Columbia's new 'University City' identity.

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