2020 Winner of IIDA Georgia’s Best of the Best Award for Education
2020 Winner of ASID Georgia’s Design Excellence Bronze Award
As Emory University reimagined their new Student Life Center, their goal was to provide a space for students centered around creating a community where diversity and social interactions can flourish. At the center of the Student Life Center is the largest dining hall on campus – The Dobbs Common Table. The DCT creates an opportunity for students and faculty to engage in a relaxed dining environment, allowing students to find comfort while easing their transition into college. In order to create zones within the 775 seats offered in the space, we created intimate pockets, each with its own identity, divided into the following areas: Crossroads, Front Porch, Warehouse, Chef’s Table and Private Dining. We worked closely with local craftsman (B-10 Union, Corn Upholstery, and DDW Inc.) to design custom millwork and furnishings that not only bring warmth, but also define clear circulation throughout the space. Diamond tufted banquettes and detailed wall paneling emulate the traditional collegiate grandeur while providing character and a sense of nostalgia to the space. We focused on integrating honest, timeless materials made by local artisans that will patina over time, such as solid oak tables and live metals. It was important to Emory that the students and faculty feel a connection to their community and the city, so we incorporated the work of local artists into the design. The work of Atlanta-based artists can be seen in the custom ceiling mural by Christina Kwan, and the gallery walls that showcase historic Emory archival images alongside original artwork by local artists curated with Amy Parry Projects.
Photography by Nigel Marson