The four-story academic building has a three-story daylighted lobby connecting circulation, seating and a café on the North and East, as well as a two-story daylight atrium above the student “living room” in the center of the building. The open design allows for visual connection between the multiple levels and the daylight public spaces. This sense of transparency is enhanced by the glass-fronted seminar rooms, offices, trading room, and classrooms adjacent to the public spaces. Daylight is brought to the lowest level through the use of a sunken garden on the east of the building. HLB provided daylighting and solar analysis throughout the design process, to enhance the views, connection with nature and daylight harvesting in this primarily overcast climate. Particular attention was given to designing a lighting control system that captured energy savings from daylight harvesting, multiple-level, and multiple-scene strategies, while providing a simple user interface for all occupants.
The new School of Business at the University of Albany, a part of SUNY, is located in a prominent position in the Uptown Campus adjacent to the Podium Academic Complex. This signature building is the last piece of the front door to the campus, providing teaching, computer lab and office spaces and a new pedestrian tunnel connection to the Podium.