Butler University, Indianapolis, IN
The new School of Business building is designed to fully support and communicate the school’s focus on innovation, experiential learning, and productive interaction between businesses and the academic community.
The educational activity inherent in this interaction between the academic and business world is put front-and-center in the new School of Business building. Its program includes a range of instructional spaces that support the School’s growing undergraduate enrollment—from 600 to 1000 in the last five years—and anticipated growth in graduate programs.
The building organization supports innovation, with workspaces for students, businesses, and visiting practitioners prominently visible from a multi-story atrium gathering space at the center of the building. Surrounding the atrium is an Innovation Commons, equipped and furnished for students starting and running their own businesses and for a range of other types of experiential learning. Behind glass garage doors, its Centers are distributed around the atrium on the ground floor. The Centers provide space where businesses, faculty, and students work together to solve business challenges. Their prominent location conveys the importance and vitality of collaborative work to the school and its guests.
Located in a prominent place on the campus, visible from the east entrance, the new building completes the cross-axis of the campus’s original master plan. Its rusticated limestone cladding recalls the campus’s historic buildings while conveying a dynamic new image. Its tall, slim glazed openings mark its important corner and shape an active new silhouette.