University of Georgia: Lamar Dodd School of Art Masterplan

Athens, GA

The Lamar Dodd School of Art at the University of Georgia is a $40M, 210,000 sqft building that integrates fourteen arts departments on four levels. Academic art departments were, at that time, housed in 11 locations across campus including one main building constructed in the 1960’s which initially held all of the departments.

The programming effort involved accommodating substantial growth in both quality and quantity of space while keeping the expansion within realistic limits. A major factor in achieving this goal was consensus building among the faculty throughout the process to the effect that the recombination of departments would produce a richer and more effective environment for teaching than their current spaces.  At the same time the firm began intensive analysis to examine site planning, local ecology, and open space issues. The original campus, built in the 18th Century, was organized around a college green. In contrast to the historic campus, the proposed site is located on a very steep slope overlooking vast parking lots and a meandering seasonal tributary of the Oconee River. Both the slope and the riparian zone from reclaimed land under the existing parking lots played a major role in how the firm proceeded to develop the building. The new building will join the Music School, the Performing Arts Center, and the Museum of Art to complete the UGA Performing and Visual Arts Complex, a new quad for the University.

Landscape designed while at Rogers Marvel Architects.