The Kean University Science Building Addition was a project with a unique goal to express the University’s commitment to CRISPR grant research and provide a facility that would attract the best and brightest students, faculty, and leading research scientists. The project entailed an addition to an existing 1960 nondescript brick science building facing the main entrance to the campus. The project challenge was to design an addition that would provide a new and exciting face for the new collaborative science program and to those entering the campus. The addition also needed to connect the new research labs to the science departments at the second and third-floor levels of the existing building while avoiding major underground campus utilities that would be very expensive to move.
The solution was the design of a transparent elevated building to provide an aesthetic that solicits the attention of those entering the campus. This was accomplished by using a poured-in-place concrete structure that would provide the flexibility to match existing floor levels, architecturally expose the structure, and provide support by concrete columns that were located to avoid the existing utilities below the addition while also welcoming circulation to the campus pathways.