The architect resigned due to a project of a dormitory without windows

The vast majority of rooms would have virtual windows that simulate daylight. “It’s zan opening disguised in the dormitory. ”

Architect Dennis McFadden withdrew from the University of California expert committee in protest of the design of a dormitory that has no classical but virtual windows. The Santa Barbara campus dormitory should be constructed as a facility in which over 90% of students, out of a total of 4,500, would reportedly live in rooms without windows.

The facility called Munger Hall should have an area of ​​156,000 square meters, and the project envisages a solution that is certainly not in line with humane living conditions, and designed by investor Charles Munger and who donated $ 200 million to the project, with a total budget of $ 1.5 billion. The billionaire has previously donated to university campus development projects, such as Stanford and the University of Michigan.

McFadden resigned as an architect-consultant on the university committee, where he was for 15 years, saying that he “disturbs the proposed design of the building“, He writes The Washington Post.

94% of students in single rooms had virtual windows that would simulate sunlight.

The project envisages that the giant Munger Hall building has a cubic shape and fourteen entrances and exits, so windows would be missing. That’s right 94% of students in single rooms had virtual windows that would simulate sunlight.

Each of the nine residential floors in this dormitory would have eight “houses” and eight separate “apartments” organized around a common kitchen and living room. On the top floor, there would be a yard, one hectare in area, with so-called “social cocoons” and seating areas.

In his resignation letter McFadden is called this design unsustainable from his perspective as an architect, a parent, and a human being.

“A huge amount of evidence indicates that the indoor environment with access to natural light, fresh air and views of nature improves both the physical and mental health of those who live in those areas.” The design of Munger Hall ignores this evidence and it seems to take a position as if it is all irrelevant, “said McFadden.

No project so far has been so destructive to campus

McFadden said he left the committee because he was unable to make any changes to the dormitory design, according to Santa Barbara Independent.

“The project is 100% completed, and no approval has been requested, there has been no vote, nor is there any intention to submit any further objections. Yet in the nearly 15 years I have worked as a consulting architect at DRC, no project presented to the committee has been larger, more transformative, and potentially destructive than Munger Hall..

McFadden also has the public support of colleagues, so the American architectural critic Paul Goldberger, the winner of the Pulitzer Prize, commented on the project. Munger Hall, tweeting: “If all this is true, this design is a grotesque, sick joke – a prison disguised as a dormitory. No, the design depends on the billionaire donor. How low UCSB has fallen since the day it had architects like Charles Moore. ”

Virtual windows with circadian rhythm control system

Munger, who designed what the building would look like, is the vice president of Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway conglomerate and has no formal architectural knowledge.

Officially, the project of the new building is being signed VTBS Architects, who had the following comment on this situation: “This design stems from the research and iterative processes of Mr. Munger, who sought to devise a transformational approach to student housing. While single rooms provide each student with his / her private space, every effort has been made to encourage coexistence and cooperation in student life. ”

To McDden’s primary critique of the project’s lack of natural light in most student rooms, the principal’s response VTBS Architects, Navy F Banvard, was that that critique is actually unfounded.

“All single bedrooms have either a conventional or a virtual window. All virtual windows will be complete programmed circadian rhythm control system in order to control the level of illumination, as well as the color temperature of natural daylight, “said Banward.

When you are already here…

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