Renovating a building in the center of a campus without disrupting the surrounding collegiate community takes skill and compassion. Over time, the Scandling Dining Hall had remained static as the HWS campus literally grew around it. Though it dutifully fulfilled its original program, it failed to support the social aspects accompanying the dining experience. For students, eating is less about food, and more about hanging out with friends. The renovation became an opportunity to gather disparate social spaces that had formed throughout campus back into the campus center.
Today, students enjoy open spaces that allow them to engage in private conversations all the while observing, and being observed by, the activities around them. The renovation and addition add a collection of spaces that fosters interaction in various settings. To address the campus’ growth, the design transforms the former backyard of Scandling into an engaging terrace that welcomes the constant flow of people all day.
Using durable, traditional materials such as slate, brick, cast stone, and glass to tie into the existing building, the project knits the building back into the vibrant social fabric of the campus. Scandling Campus Center, as it’s now known, has become a destination for the HWS community to gather.