Van H. Gilbert Architect PC

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Student Union Building (SUB)
Renovation and Addition

University of New Mexico, Albuquerque

The renovated and expanded Student Union Building serves as the gateway to the UNM campus and as the welcoming resting place for all. The initial step in the design process was to listen to the campus community to determine user priorities and to generate ideas on how best to meet the needs of the students, faculty, and general public. The VHGA design team worked with the building committee to develop an organized circulation flow, realistic space allocations, logical department adjacencies, consolidated support services, and a new interior organization. The three-story atrium visually connects all building components and functions as an organizing element to interior circulation. All spaces are fresh, light, and open. The building’s exterior design, the surrounding courtyards and plazas with shaded seating areas, and new entry ways extend a welcome from the moment the visitor encounters the building.

The colors, materials, light levels, and views all contribute to the building’s welcoming ambiance. The computer center is accessible 24/7 and coffee and office supplies are available round the clock. An enlarged Conference Center is located on the third floor. The Center includes distance learning hookups, meeting rooms, and meal service staging areas, and a 200-seat multi-use theatre.

Van H. Gilbert Architect PC worked in association with WTW of Pittsburgh.


  • Best of New Mexico 2004, Outstanding University Project, Southwest Contractor Magazine