University at Buffalo

Buffalo, NY

68,138 gross square feet

LEED Gold certified

Academics, LEED Gold certified, Sustainable

Located at the southern edge of University at Buffalo's Downtown Campus, this project serves as an anchor and as a gateway to the UB campus.

The mission of the Educational Opportunity Center (EOC) is to provide innovative academic programs that lead to either additional higher education or gainful employment and economic self-sufficiency. As such its location at this urban site is particularly appropriate. The project integrates the site, the local context and the Downtown Campus, while incorporating and reflecting the Educational Opportunity Center mission and vision.


The functional needs of the building are varied, accommodating the Educational Opportunity Center, the Bethel Head Start program, and the lobby connection to the adjacent M. Wile building. In order for the building to represent the EOC's mission of providing an attainable and seamless educational opportunity to their students, the design solution expresses a welcoming path to learning for those who are outsiders interested in self-improvement. The solution creates an open entry that welcomes current and prospective students, visible exposed stairs to metaphorically express the student's academic journey, and features a tube of classrooms that signifies the end goal of learning.


The design of new the facility will help students feel that the academic journey is attainable.  Academic spaces are designed to be accessible and welcoming, while public and social spaces are designed to foster the integration of faculty and students, creating a culture of learning that is supportive and very engaged.


The building is LEED Gold certified and a model of sustainable construction.


For more information about this project contact A. Quay Thompson, AIA, LEED AP BD+C:

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