Nathelyne Archie-Kennedy Building
The School of Architecture is housed in the Nathelyne Archie-Kennedy Building. Selected to design the building from five nationally recognized architects who participated in the competition Michael Rotondi of Roto Architects created this most unique facility. HKS of Dallas served as the Architect of Record. The design began in 2002, with ground breaking held in August 2003, and the School of Architecture moved into the 105,000 sq. ft. building in August 2005.
School of Architecture Digital Fabrication Center
Prairie View A&M Fabrication Design Center is a new facility for the School of Architecture. This innovative space will house a variety of equipment allowing students to build, develop and test ideas. The building is divided into assembling space and equipment spaces. Students will be able to use multiple methods and equipment to build their work. This state of the art facility will house the latest technology in laser cutters, CNC routers, wood and metal tools as well as 3D printers. The intent is for the process of modeling and construction to be done in one location offering opportunities of peer-to- peer learning, collaboration and cross-disciplinary interaction.
Design Concept and Grand Opening
The Fabrication Center is conceived by Kirksey Architects as an elevated plane that references the “prairie.” This plane hovers over the exterior brick walls allowing light to filter into the space. The brick exterior walls reference the extrusion of the plane by revealing the earth’s strata. The entrance, deeply recessed, creates covered outdoor gathering space, while the landscape embraces the building thus creating uncovered gathering space. The building is divided pro-grammatically into three areas; shops, assembly and digital fabrication. As the faculty, students and visitors moves through the space, light monitors and clerestory windows offer illumination and connection to the sky. The interior walls of the assembly space are for exhibiting projects and information so that students can display and learn from them. This new and exciting facility is scheduled to open on March 19, 2018 that will inspire architecture students and their work, not only by providing an unconventional model space, but also housing state of the art equipment.
Labs and Workshops
Students have access to the following labs and workshops in the Nathelyne Archie-Kennedy Building:
1st floor of Nathelyne Archie Kennedy Building:
- Model Shop: The Model Shop is a supervised area open during the hours of 8:00 am-5:00 PM Monday through Friday. It is also staffed nights and weekends during the school year with a trained group of work-study students when budget funds are available. The Digital Fabrication Lab (Room 128) is located within the Model Shop area. This separate room contains a number of pieces of numerically controlled cutting and fabrication equipment (Laser Cutters, CNC Router, CNC Plasma and 3D Printer) for student models. Students must be trained before being allowed to use this room and the equipment. For safety reasons the room is closed after hours, unless a staff, faculty or work study student, who completed safety training, is present. [Note: Upon the opening of the Fabrication Building this space will be remodeled to accommodate the Art Program of the SOA.]
- Storage: There are flat files and cupboards for use by departments to store drawings for accreditation purposes.
2nd floor of Nathelyne Archie Kennedy Building
- Digital Classroom (Room 223): This university maintained computer classroom is heavily used for instructional purposes by several departments in the SOA. For regularly scheduled classes this room is assigned through the SOA. For occasional use outside regular class time, this room is reserved by request to the Dean’s office.
- Print Room (Room 225): This room contains printers, plotters scanners as well as both PC and Mac computers. It is heavily used by all students.
- Computing Workshop (Room 223): Located outside of the Digital Classroom, this separate space contains work stations for student use. It is open even when the Digital Classroom is closed or being used for instruction.
- Imaging/Scanning Center (Room 225): Scanners, both conventional and wide, and plotters are found in this area.
- Digital Media Arts Workshop (Room 226): Located near the offices of the faculty for this program this recently remodeled room (2017) offers work space and production equipment.
The John B. Coleman Library is located across the street from the SOA facility. It holds over 350,000 volumes, including over 800 print periodical titles with access to several thousand electronic full-text scholarly journals. The library is also a participating member of a statewide database-sharing program known as TexShare, and a member of the Houston Area Research Libraries Consortium (HARLIC).
The SOA maintains a small reference center on the 2nd floor of the building. While receiving support from the main University Library system, having access to topical editions offers benefits to the students allowing for a quiet place to study and do research.