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George P. and Cynthia Woods Mitchell Institute for Fundamental Physics and Astronomy, and George P. Mitchell '40 Physics Building

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2009, Michael Graves and Associates

Wedged into a tight triangular site on the north side of East Campus along University Drive, this pair of connected buildings gives the university a new identity on this commercial thoroughfare. The L-shaped Physics Building embraces an auditorium with a green environmental roof garden and the oval shape of the Astronomy Building forms an entrance to the campus on a primary cross axis. Although restrained from using his customary bold color and material palette, Graves has manipulated the university's standard monotone buff brick with subtle darker bands and contrasts of white pilasters and projecting slabs. By decomposing the building forms into open structural grids filled with transparent glazing, the building gives the university a more welcoming presence than its solid-walled neighbors.

Writing Credits

Author: 
Gerald Moorhead et al.
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Cover: Buildings of Texas

Buildings of Texas, Gerald Moorhead and contributors. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2013, 112-112.

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