The University of Calgary has commissioned a new academic building for the Haskayne School of Business to be completed in May of 2022. The project, entitled Mathison Hall, is ~11,000sm of new construction located south of the existing Scurfield Hall building and connected via a four-storey atrium. The new building will create a dynamic, technology-rich, highly sustainable and innovative new facility to meet expanding educational program needs and support greater community engagement at the University of Calgary’s Main Campus.
The addition to the Haskayne School of Business aspires to create a “home” for its student body and activate a stronger relationship between students, faculty and administrators. From the start, our design team was tasked with the challenge of finding innovative ways to keep business students from leaving the facility once class is finished. Due to U of C’s proximity to transit nodes, it has labeled as a “commuter campus” since students tend to only stay on campus for classes and leave shortly afterwards. The current Scurfield Hall — which is the hub for the Haskayne School of Business — is also inconveniently at the edge of U of C’s main campus and away from desirable campus amenities, like the student food court and retail services, in MacEwan Hall. Therefore, we specifically looked at how retail options — specifically, food and beverage — could entice students, as well as visiting community members, to stay not only on campus but in this facility. Coffee shops as well as quality food and beverage offerings are natural destinations for students. Thus, when looking to activate a potentially underutilized space, these are natural desirable amenities to ensure students and visitors stick around. It is a simple and effective way to generate traffic, activity and interest in faculty buildings on campus.
In collaboration with Diamond Schmitt Architects.