AdvisorDomin, Christopher J.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThis research views college unions as social and physical constructs in the urban and cultural context. It argues that their role is broader than a campus territory. Unions are urban artifacts that function to hinge campus environment with the cityscape and which must be grounded to a location, a site, and an urban context. Unions are cultural nodes that interweave different ages, disciplines, and ethnicities in one place. This research also argues that the architecture of unions today has lost its historical intention while embracing a contemporary global approach. The research proposes criteria for future designs to help connect to the historical vision. These criteria were arrived at through investigative processes concerning the historical beginnings of college unions in the US, the chronological evolution of their theme concepts, the nature and scale of their programs, verbal and visual surveys, and interviews with people.The research is linked to a design process through which these criteria are applied, in an attempt, to test their validity through an architectural proposal. While both modes of research must be anchored to a site, they are sited in Portland, Oregon, tied to one of Portland's largest urban developments in a public university, the Oregon Health and Science University (OHSU). The research solidifies its future unions criteria to guide the design process into three core values: Gathering, Diversity, and Heart. Consequently, the process sought to open up the architectural form, in light of these core values, to accommodate public activities as well as private activities, and situate it in a connected urban context that anchors the project to its city/university. The research uses site, program, and regional technology as research topics to approach a synthetic architectural union concept. The research reflects upon the issues that were explored throughout this experiment, other issues that could be explored, and other possibilities that could differently approach union's urban role using the same criteria.
Degree ProgramGraduate College