Centennial Student Union
Minnesota State University Mankato
The Centennial Student Union at the University of Minnesota, Mankato suffered from an inadequate entry and undistinguished appearance on its public face. The CSU also struggled to find a strategy to activate the food service venues, lounge, and administration spaces.
Today the CSU links the exterior of the campus to the interior quad by way of an inviting environment and very transparent design. To activate the space, three, large-scale holes were cut through the main level floor to enhance sightlines to the previously underutilized lower level. Today students can see activity between the main and lower level lounge areas. Local Mankato limestone gives regional texture to the facility and is utilized on an over-scaled, fireplace hearth wall, which is the figurative new campus living room. Old Terrazzo flooring was replaced in select areas with new terrazzo in high color and contrasting patterns, giving visual energy and scale to the very open plan.
In the low light, long winter climate of Minnesota, south facing glass curtainwall, a long roof overhang, and west vertical stone fin allows desired natural light into the interior, and through to the center of the building.
- 2007, AIA Utah "Merit Award"
- 2006, National ACUI Facility Design Award
- 2006, American Schools & University Educational Interiors Showcase "Gold Citation"
- 2006, Education Design Showcase, American School & University "Remodel Citation"