University of Texas at Dallas – Sciences Building

  • area / size 187,000 sqft
  • Completed 2020
  • Stantec designed a dynamic space for learning at the University of Texas at Dallas’ Sciences Building in Richardson, Texas.

    The University of Texas at Dallas Sciences Building progresses the institution’s goal of becoming one of the world’s leading research universities. Designed to attract intelligent and innovative students and faculty to the campus, the new LEED Gold facility also strives to provide an environment for inspiring collaboration and promoting bold action within diverse areas of study.

    Anchoring the new science quad, the multi-story Sciences Building contains laboratories, classrooms, collaboration space, offices, and support space primarily for mathematics, physics, space sciences, and the UTeach Program – which trains math and science majors for teaching careers. Inspired by the closely correlated teaching missions of the programs within, such as mathematical sciences and physics, the building’s siting further amplifies the synergy of multi-disciplinary research and collaboration.

    With pedestrian flow a significant priority, the large lecture and instruction components of the program were oriented along the west wing, masking the energy plant from the newly formed quad space. Research labs were concentrated in the north wing, meeting the west wing at a northwest knuckle, responding to the campus master plan’s secondary east-west pedestrian route. The northwest corner is lifted from the ground creating a gateway to the quad and campus from the western student residential areas.

    A highlight of the design includes a Soundwave Wall which serves as an area of respite. Within this space is a feature wall inspired by the work of a professor who converts the electromagnetic resonance of astrological bodies into music. The feature wall is composed of zinc panels perforated to create a physical manifestation of his composition of a well-known song. The perforations are illuminated by LEDs which appear and change temperature as the song’s frequencies change.

    Another feature of the design is the Vertical Learning Commons which create a continuous connection to the exterior for building users, offering courtyard views and sights to nature without the use of shades. This unique connector space creates dynamic places for collaboration, study, meeting, circulation, and even science on display as it intersects each floor level. Charred wood is used throughout the vertical learning commons as an effective wayfinding design tool.

    Design: Stantec
    Construction Manager: Linbeck
    Photography: Jason Keen