University of Washington Allen Library Research Commons4000 15th Ave NE
Seattle, WA 98105
Design Achievement - The Allen Library Research Commons enables University of Washington students to conduct collaborative research activities in a vibrant and technology-rich environment. DLR Group's design uses FF&E selections to create distinct zones of activity within a large open space. The use of predominantly mobile systems allows the students to reorganize spaces on the fly to adapt to their specific needs in formal and informal research and presentation activities. Whether exploring concepts with fellow students on whiteboards, conducting online research or communicating with people across the world to share ideas, users of the Research Commons are able to take full advantage of this space to fulfill their academic needs. This project represents the first facility of its kind on campus. The vibrant design announces this new presence to the student community, while creating an environment embodying the bold energy of the researchers who have wholeheartedly embraced it.
Scope Summary - The Allen Library Research Commons project encompassed the renovation of 15,500 SF of existing open-plan library space to create a new research environment. Scope included creating a master space plan; light demolition work of an existing service area and relocation of the help desk; new finishes (paint, carpet and rubber base); power and data upgrades supporting new multimedia systems, and new wireless hubs; and new furnishings throughout to support the master space plan supporting diverse student research activities. DLR Group provided architecture and interiors services.
The success of the Research commons has inspired educational facilities from around the world to reach out to the University of Washington for insights into how this space has evolved.
University representatives have maintained a development blog tracking the vision for the Commons, the process of its construction, and post-occupancy activities, as well as an interactive map of the space.