American Campus Communities – Gladding Residence Center

  • area / size 271,000 sqft
  • Completed 2018
  • Sixthriver provided interior design services for American Campus Communities’ Gladding Residence Center in Richmond, Virginia.

    The new 12-story, Gladding Residence Center is designed to help students connect. The 365,000 sq ft complex features an abundance of community spaces to house more than 1,500 first year students. The city of Richmond has a strong artistic community that challenged us to design an environment that acts as an equal counterpart to showcase local artists. The project design strives to emulate the local culture of the city including the Richmond Street Art Mural Project (a citywide public mural project throughout the city establishing Richmond as a premier art destination). As an extension of the city’s public artwork, a main design feature was to incorporate colorful artwork, much of it by the school’s alumni and local, and custom graphics on double height wallcoverings in the neighborhoods.

    An additional unique feature of the project is the preservation of an architecturally and locally significant portion of a Bath House built in 1912. This unusual feature turns a perceived design obstacle into an opportunity. The bathhouse (named after the historic Branch Public Baths) structure now houses community space and media lounge; the full integration of old and new and a representation of Richmond’s history and design culture.

    At the epicenter of each residential floor is a ‘neighborhood’ providing an intimate community within a community. Each neighborhood includes shared kitchens, laundry facilities, study areas and cozy lounges. The neighborhoods also display the custom wall graphics bringing in both the local culture and providing a vibrant backdrop for students to engage and interact.

    The main two-story community space features a fireplace, generous overstuffed sofas for relaxation, games, a multi-media room, and a fully equipped fitness facility. Throughout the academic and recreational community spaces, the material selections and activities reinforce the connection to the local culture, architecture and history of the city whether that is taking inspiration from the local artists or the literal reincorporation of a piece of Richmond’s history into the overall design.

    Interior Design: Sixthriver
    Building Architects: Ayers Saint Gross and Clark Nexsen
    Photography: Paul Burk