Sasaki was retained, in association with Rowe Architects, to design a new graduate studies building for the Warrington School of Business. The initial work included program analysis and master planning to provide for the future expansion of the facilities to incorporate growth in classroom and executive education space requirements.
Prominently located near the "front door" to campus, the corner of University Avenue and 13th Street, the Hough Graduate Business Studies building serves as a bold new landmark for the UF campus. This innovative learning facility provides approximately 70,000 gross square feet of space to accommodate state-of-the-art classrooms, career development and counseling centers, academic program offices, a recruitment suite, and space for students to meet and study.
Hough Hall is organized around a north facing three-story atrium and an animated central circulation spine. Entries and interior circulation relate to the atrium to provide clear paths of movement and easy department/program area identification creating a student-oriented building.
The wide, central circulation spine encourages casual interactions and connectivity. The large classrooms are located primarily to the west of the atrium and the offices located to the east. An exception is the Career Services Office located to the west of the atrium on the same floor as the MBA offices. Additionally, this places Career Services in close proximity to the boardroom. Circulation spaces connect to the class¬rooms and study areas, which are locat¬ed on each of the three floors. Student lounges are adjacent to the atrium and to the exposed grand stair.
Because business today is defined by teamwork, the design and layout of the new building provides spaces where students can experience hands-on learning in this approach. In addition, this student-oriented building has been created with circulation spaces in mind, with areas for casual and unplanned encounters, supporting individual and team discussion and research. The floors have also been strategically planned to serve the needs of visitors.
The atrium looks back to the Emerson Courtyard, Bryan Hall and the Business quadrangle, anchoring Hough Hall to the site and the rest of the Warrington College of Business. An exposed grand stair connecting all levels of the building overlooks the atrium. This space constitutes the heart of Hough Hall, and provides an inviting space where students can study and interact, as well as to host alumni, student, and corporate events and receptions. Hough Hall creates a sense of place, and provides outstanding facilities and fosters a learning environment that promotes interaction between faculty, students, alumni, recruiters and other constituents.
The Financial Times ranked the Internet Program at UF MBA at the Hough Graduate School of Business No. 3 in the world in the publication's "Online MBA 2015" rankings, and No. 1 in the U.S.
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