Van H. Gilbert Architect PC

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O’Donnell Hall College of Education
New Mexico State University, Las Cruces

As home to the School of Education, O’Donnell Hall’s new identity celebrates the profession of education in a light-filled, technology-rich environment. O’Donnell Hall is defined by a 40,000 square foot addition organized around a central atrium space and the total gutting of the original building. The three-story addition to the School establishes a new visual campus identity for the school. The reconfigured original structure intersects the new addition in a seamless integration defined by a harmony of design details and sense of proportion.

O’Donnell Hall now provides flexible classroom space able to adapt to NMSU’s changing needs. The design provides a technology interface for today’s systems and infrastructure that will adapt to the future. To foster energy efficiency the building volumes are organized to concentrate classroom spaces separate from the office function. Other building features include multi-functional classrooms, computer labs, distance learning facilities, a new lecture hall, and a learning theater. To achieve the facility envisioned by NMSU the design team worked in a collaborative manner with the building committee and all who were interested in determining the school’s needs and priorities.

New windows with high performance glazing allow for maximum light transmission with minimal heat gain. The windows are deep set with shading projections on the south windows. When the building walls were open, new insulation was added, another step in achieving a more sustainable building design.

Van H. Gilbert Architect PC worked in association with Shepley Bulfinch of Boston.

  • Best of New Mexico, 2009 Southwest Contractor Magazine