Stephen A. Levin Building, University of Pennsylvania
Award of Merit
This building identifies itself as an iconic gateway into campus and celebrates a new life sciences precinct by defining a new academic quadrangle.
The genesis for the new Neural and Behavioral Sciences (NBS) building is the acknowledgment that the study of complex behaviors will be a fundamental focus of life sciences in the 21st century.
The NBS building strongly identifies itself as an iconic gateway into campus and celebrates a new life sciences precinct by defining a new academic quadrangle.
The project connects and conceptually defines the interdisciplinary life sciences precinct by placing an iconic building at the center. The building’s simple massing, combined with the lacy south-facing scrim, form a clear iconic center to the precinct.
The materiality of the building is striking and provides richness to the interior and exterior spaces. The dappled light and textures of the circulation and learning environments are visually and cognitively stimulating, a beautiful expression of the school's program. Three contrasting yet complementing elevational textures, colors, and details, the building sits juxtaposed to traditional buildings without overwhelming them. The sun screen, while functional, provides a rich texture when viewed from both the interior and exterior. The cut-out pattern that reflects visual images of the science studied within is a wonderful integration of the building pedagogy with the architecture.