The Sheila and Eric Samson Pavilion at Ohio’s Case Western Reserve University is an impressive behemoth of a building that brings together the Dental, Nursing and Medical education programmes into a single four storey construction. The building is the centrepiece of the campus, with the atrium roof specially engineered to draw in maximum light within the rectangular structure of lecture halls, classrooms, labs, office workstations, conference rooms and staff lounges. While each school contains its own unique teaching facilities, they all come together in shared communal spaces. The open plan design allows for inclusivity, providing large flexible study areas including two learning community spaces at either end of the building, which are open to the large central courtyard, designed to accommodate students in work and during rest.
The acoustic design of the open plan areas and courtyard was developed through extensive computer modelling. The treatment to the central courtyard includes bespoke sound absorbent treatment located within the trusses that support the glazed roof above the 80 ft high space.
Specialist treatment was particularly applied to the proposed Critical Care Transport Simulation Centre, where a state-of-the art multi-media digital environment was created. The intended use of this area is to render realistic simulations of real-life scenarios for role-play, including a room with a replica helicopter placed inside, and commensurate levels of noise.
The acoustic separation and room acoustics were important considerations in the more traditional education spaces including an auditorium, lecture theatres and a Case Method Classroom as well as high levels of privacy where required throughout the building.