University of Florida Student Life
The Otis P. Hawkins Center for Academic and Personal Excellence consists of 82,613 square feet of advising, tutoring and support space dedicated to the academic and personal development of student athletes at the University of Florida.
The project includes academic and wellness spaces for student athletes, including: a physical and clinical research suite featuring a BOD POD room, exam rooms, force plates for biomechanical testing, physical rehabilitation space and locker rooms; a mental health suite with separate entrance, private offices, conference room, work room and reception area; nutrition education suite including offices for nutrition advising, a full demonstration/teaching kitchen, and “fuel bar” with healthy food and beverage choices; student advising offices; tutoring spaces for individual and small groups; student study rooms; “quiet” rooms for focused study; computer labs; conference rooms; classrooms ; and, an auditorium.
The design team was able to balance privacy with a sense of openness, light and transparency through the use of acoustic, laminated glass. A specially designed gradient film was applied to the glass panels providing privacy while graphically highlighting the program’s core values.
The featured wood ceiling in the building’s communicating space/lobby is constructed from river reclaimed long-leaf heart pine – a motif repeated in select areas throughout the building to assist with branding and wayfinding. The wood was reclaimed locally from the Suwannee River and includes logs that may have been harvested over 125 years ago. The use of the wood is both conceptually and sustainably significant to the project.
The building was designed to meet Gold Certification Level requirements for the USGBC’s LEED 4.0 (United States Green Building Council Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design).