University of Texas El Paso New Interdisciplinary Research Building
Creating an interdisciplinary research building where scholars across multiple disciplines are able to collaborate is often talked about but rarely achieved. At The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP), president Dr. Diana Natalicio has a vision for a building where the whole is greater than the sum of its parts. A synergistic research building would provide superior spaces to collaborate, extending the reach and prominence of UTEP within the research community. Facility Programming and Consulting and Perkins and Will were engaged to prepare this unique architectural program of requirements. As proposed by the UT El Paso Committee Members, all spaces to be included in the building program will fall into one of the six following categories: Research Labs (Open Wet Lab, Open Dry Labs), Core Instrumentation Facilities, Office Spaces, Meeting / Conference / Demonstration Spaces, Other Spaces (Gathering Spaces, Building Support Spaces), and Exterior Building Spaces. Spaces within the new facility will be responsive to current and future needs, and promote adaptability and collegial interaction. Because her vision involves experts who have not yet been identified, conducting research that has not yet been defined, planning a facility of this magnitude has several levels of challenges.