University of Texas - Student Activity Center
P and S Masonry, Inc.
Architect: Overland Partners | Architects
General Contractor: Spaw Glass
Suppliers: AG&M ; Tim Weirauch Masonry ; Texas Quarries ; TXI ; Hohmann and Barnard, Inc. ; Reinforcing Steel Supply ; Silicone Specialties, Inc.
Owner: University of Texas
Wall System: Barrier Wall: Stone Veneer/Reinforced Concrete Block
The Student Activities Center at the University of Texas at Austin provides 149,000 square feet of departmental space, dining, and distributed lounge space, and over 25,000 feet of outdoor seating. It offers thirteen meeting rooms for student groups, a ballroom, a black box theater, dance space and an auditorium. It is also home to many university departments.
The SAC draws the casual visitor in with its wide brick pathways and ample New Cambrian basalt paved patio spaces. The cut black stone wraps up from the patios, stairs and ramps, and onto the walls of the entrance space, drawing the eye. Further, the basalt passes seamlessly from outdoors to the interior at its glazed entrances. The introduction of the deep, black basalt, sets the SAC apart from its brick neighbors on campus and gives it quite a modern appearance. Not only does it fit with the contemporary building elements, it also blends quite nicely with the more traditional Texas limestones that are also present on the exterior of the SAC.
The Cordova Shell Limestone is laid in an ashlar pattern just above eye level, giving the large building texture and scale. Another course of stone is introduced with a smooth Cordova Cream Limestone that occurs at the upper-most part of the building. The stone wraps into deep-set vertical windows, giving the building a thick, grounded appearance. The Student Activities Center is a vibrant gathering space for the University that allows for casual encounters, a quick lunch, or a study break both inside and out.
Date of Project Completion: April 2010
Photography by Kelsey Harper