September 28, 2006

Rutgers Design Competition Stresses Pedestrian Appeal, Community Integration

"Rutgers University on Tuesday unveiled five architectural concepts to remake the heart of its flagship campus on College Avenue in New Brunswick," the Record reports

"In inaugurating the design competition, the university said it was looking for ways to make the College Avenue campus more pedestrian friendly and to better connect it with the Raritan River. The campus is cut off from the river by Route 18."

These days, a pedestrian-friendly streetscape and town/gown integration are considered increasingly important in attracting students to college campuses, as I posted last month. And such integration pays dividends to the host community as well -- something that Framingham is sadly lacking despite the presence of a state college.

"Wellesley is [a] beautiful example where the college presence vitalizes downtown," reader Martin commented on this site. "Framingham State, on the other hand, is virtually invisible from the neighboring commercial area along route 9." His entire comment is worth reading (at the bottom of the post).

The entries in Rutgers design compeition, "created by five renowned architectural teams from around the globe, are, at this point, meant to spur discussion, not construction at the cash-strapped university," the article notes.

"Budgetary constraints or not, this university is not going to stop dreaming," President Richard McCormick told the Record.

You can see the concepts online here.

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