<p>Ample natural light flows into studio and classroom spaces in the interior of the sculpture building. <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

Ample natural light flows into studio and classroom spaces in the interior of the sculpture building.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

<p>While the sculpture building stands at the center of the block, the art gallery sits along the perimeter to activate the street front. Both an outdoor passageway and an underground ramp connect the gallery back to the sculpture building. <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

While the sculpture building stands at the center of the block, the art gallery sits along the perimeter to activate the street front. Both an outdoor passageway and an underground ramp connect the gallery back to the sculpture building.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

<p>The program of the building demanded an exceptional quality of light, low energy usage, and operable windows. Working with the curtainwall manufacturer Schuco and Kalwall Corporation, we developed a wall system that incorporates solar shading, a triple glazed low-e vision panel, 8-foot high operable windows, and a translucent double cavity spandrel panel. Consequently, the entire skin of the building admits natural light. The cavity traps solar radiation, forming a warm air layer that further increases thermal performance when the sun is shining. <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

The program of the building demanded an exceptional quality of light, low energy usage, and operable windows. Working with the curtainwall manufacturer Schuco and Kalwall Corporation, we developed a wall system that incorporates solar shading, a triple glazed low-e vision panel, 8-foot high operable windows, and a translucent double cavity spandrel panel. Consequently, the entire skin of the building admits natural light. The cavity traps solar radiation, forming a warm air layer that further increases thermal performance when the sun is shining.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

<p>A steel plate staircase in the lobby of the sculpture building stretches from the basement all the way to the roof. At the upper levels, the stair fuses inside and out through landscaped terraces overlooking the green roof of the gallery building. <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

A steel plate staircase in the lobby of the sculpture building stretches from the basement all the way to the roof. At the upper levels, the stair fuses inside and out through landscaped terraces overlooking the green roof of the gallery building.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

<p>Workshops are equipped with comprehensive exhaust systems that adjust to the number of machines running, ensuring the removal of airborne irritants while preventing a constant exhaust that would waste energy. To ensure that hazardous materials are not introduced on the studio levels and re-circulated through the building, an air monitoring system has been installed.  This sampling system can be used for routine monitoring and diagnostics in the event of an air quality problem. <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

Workshops are equipped with comprehensive exhaust systems that adjust to the number of machines running, ensuring the removal of airborne irritants while preventing a constant exhaust that would waste energy. To ensure that hazardous materials are not introduced on the studio levels and re-circulated through the building, an air monitoring system has been installed. This sampling system can be used for routine monitoring and diagnostics in the event of an air quality problem.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

<p>New plantings and shade trees create a park-like setting on the former brownfield site. <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

New plantings and shade trees create a park-like setting on the former brownfield site.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

<p>The gallery was extracted from the sculpture building and placed along Edgewood Avenue to engage with the city of New Haven at the edge of campus. The gallery building is clad in glass and reclaimed western red cedar and is designed to blend with the historic houses that line this street. <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

The gallery was extracted from the sculpture building and placed along Edgewood Avenue to engage with the city of New Haven at the edge of campus. The gallery building is clad in glass and reclaimed western red cedar and is designed to blend with the historic houses that line this street.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

<p>The gallery offers a new forum for exhibiting work by students, faculty, and special guests of the School of Art. <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

The gallery offers a new forum for exhibiting work by students, faculty, and special guests of the School of Art.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

<p>The doors of the art gallery fold back accordion-style to create a porch along the street front in nice weather, inviting visitors inside.  <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

The doors of the art gallery fold back accordion-style to create a porch along the street front in nice weather, inviting visitors inside.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

<p>A very low-velocity displacement air system at the center of the floor plates efficiently ventilates the interior, protecting air quality within workshops and studios, while exposed radiation heats the perimeter. This is the first such system to be installed on the Yale campus. <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

A very low-velocity displacement air system at the center of the floor plates efficiently ventilates the interior, protecting air quality within workshops and studios, while exposed radiation heats the perimeter. This is the first such system to be installed on the Yale campus.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

<p>The high-performance envelope of the sculpture building, designed to mitigate solar gain, creates the effect of an elegant contemporary gothic fenestration as seen against Yale's gothic structures beyond. <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

The high-performance envelope of the sculpture building, designed to mitigate solar gain, creates the effect of an elegant contemporary gothic fenestration as seen against Yale's gothic structures beyond.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

<p>Ample natural light flows into studio and classroom spaces in the interior of the sculpture building. <br><small>&copy; Peter Aaron/OTTO</small></p>

How can we forge a new relationship between city and campus in the design of an innovative arts complex?

The art gallery, situated along the street front to engage the city of New Haven, is clad in a rainscreen of reclaimed western red cedar.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

In the mid-1990s, Yale University undertook a ten-year master plan for the enhancement of buildings associated with its highly regarded programs in the arts, including works by Louis Kahn, Paul Rudolph, and other noted architects. The work was intended to improve the environment not only for students and faculty but also for the New Haven community. While much of the campus clusters about cloistered quadrangles that exclude the city, the new sculpture building and art gallery sought to invert those historic patterns and invite the city into and through the site.

Reclaim

This openness was achieved by conceiving a plan for the urban brownfield site at the western edge of campus that would create perimeter street frontage where none previously existed. Originally, the gallery was intended to be included within the studio building. In order to exploit its potential to activate the street, the gallery was extracted from the main structure and placed along the perimeter, reclaiming an abandoned surface-level parking lot and creating appropriately scaled street frontage to blend with the historic houses along Edgewood Avenue. Like those houses, the gallery is clad in wood: Reclaimed western red cedar provides a rain screen wall. In nice weather, the glass walls of the front fa├žade can fold away to extend the gallery into the street and create an open, inviting porch. Meanwhile, Howe Street to the west is enlivened by new retail space at ground level with a four-story parking garage above.

At night, the sculpture building functions as a lantern at the center of the block, illuminating the complex for safe passage by pedestrians.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

The glass sculpture building stands behind the gallery at the center of the block, where it functions as a lantern, illuminating the complex from the core and fostering safe passage for pedestrians. The building was conceived as a loft, with four open floors and an exposed steel frame. The first floor contains an array of metal, wood, digital fabrication, and paint shops, along with offices and classrooms. The three upper floors contain studios that can be flexibly arrayed along the perimeter walls, with group critique and collaboration spaces at the center. Maintaining indoor air quality is a significant challenge within a workshop and studio building; we used a displacement ventilation system at the center of the floor plates that requires less fan and cooling energy while utilizing stratification to improve thermal comfort and more effectively remove contaminated air from the space.

Illuminate

The facade incorporates multiple layers to achieve high level of energy performance while remaining fully transparent.
© Peter Aaron/OTTO

The perimeter walls are entirely glazed with transparent and translucent panels, washing the fourteen-foot-high studios with natural light. To maintain a light transmitting envelope without compromising thermal performance, a curtainwall of triple glazing and insulating translucent spandrel panels was combined with an exterior sunshading system to control glare and prevent solar heat gain in the summer. The envelope not only offers exceptionally high performance but also creates an aesthetically unified building. Along the south wall, as seen against Yale's gothic structures beyond, the effect is an elegant contemporary gothic tracery derived entirely from the need to mitigate solar gain.

These three new buildings and their setting provide a center of activity for arts students, increasing interaction among the disciplines, while helping to advance Yale's plans for its arts facilities. Toward the goal of forging a new relationship with the city of New Haven at the edge of campus, the complex gains access from all four surrounding blocks. Four new landscaped passageways extend the arts program into the adjoining urban landscape while simultaneously inviting the city in.