AS+GG’s competition design the new Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University considers every aspect of its surroundings: from the campus to the lakefront and lagoon, to the adjacent buildings and the site for future expansion.
The gently curved organic form is an iconic, permeable space that encourages discourse, allows for flexible teaching configurations, and creates a new public square for the campus community. The new building will reinforce and advance the school’s position as a global leader, a true international center and a place that inspires and cultivates the business leaders of tomorrow.
Kellogg is known worldwide as a leader within business and academic communities, and a pioneer of collaborative learning. Kellogg’s new global hub must reflect its leadership within these fields in every way: from stunning architecture to innovative integrations of technology to spaces that allow for new kinds of interaction.
The challenge of the project from a programmatic and site standpoint is to maintain compression and collaborative space while increasing exterior perimeter to foster views and to admit natural light. From an efficiency standpoint, the central square diagram is good both in plan and in section. It is modular, it is flexible, it is accessible.
The new building will be accessible from multiple avenues to create a true collaborative gathering space. At the site, five major points of access become “five points of transparency,” at the lakefront, the lagoon, the adjacent buildings, the historic campus, and the future campus. By responding to all five of these points, the new building allows for flexibility and identity without jeopardizing cost or functionality.
The collaborative spirit and the sharing of ideas across disciplines and international borders results in a fluid and open approach to dialogue that matters. The form and nature of the building supports this ideology, representing a new paradigm in business education: breaking away from the box, and boundaries that confine thought. The open views, visual connections, and central public square support this ideology in every way, allowing for intellectual face-to-face discourse and meaningful discussions and learning experiences.
The grand atrium space at the building’s center serves as a kind of “town square,” a marketplace for the exchange of ideas and collaboration between all members of the international school community. In addition to providing a series of strong visual connections to lakefront, lagoon, campus and adjacent buildings, the atrium is also a common space that is democratic and non-hierarchical and a place for cross-pollination across the community.