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Schenck Forest Multipurpose Building Study

The NCSU College of Natural Resources has launched a comprehensive study to integrate a multipurpose building within Schenck Forest, aiming to bolster teaching, research, and community engagement.

Located in a 245-acre tract in Raleigh, Schenck Forest serves as a vital 'working forest' for the NCSU College of Natural Resources (CNR), offering a variety of trails and connections to the larger Raleigh Capital Area Greenway system. The proposed multipurpose building is designed as a welcoming gateway to the forest, reinforcing its role as a center for research and education while linking the University to the College's mission. Its design is mindful of the forest's ecology and blends seamlessly into the environment, demonstrating a 'light touch' on the natural landscape. The envisioned building will serve as both a tool for forest management and a dynamic educational space, leveraging indoor and outdoor areas for learning.

Positioned at the forest's boundary, the building acts as a nexus between an open green space and the forest's dense canopy. It features a plaza for gatherings and a partially covered deck, extending learning and event spaces into the natural surroundings. The design accommodates multiple functions, including office space for forestry staff, classrooms, and research support facilities, with flexibility to transform into a larger event space.

Incorporating passive design strategies like rainwater management and natural ventilation, the building aims to minimize its ecological impact. Material choices like wood and bio-based components highlight regional resources while maintaining a low carbon footprint. Additionally, geothermal systems and photovoltaic panels are included to optimize energy efficiency.

  • Sector: Higher Education
  • Scope: Planning
  • Raleigh, North Carolina
  • 6,140 SF
  • 2023
Project Team
Jesse Green
Design Principal
James Benson
Project Manager
Eliot Ball
McKim & Creed
MEP Engineering
Stewart Inc.
Civil Engineering
Surface 678
Landscape Architect
Palacio Collaborative
Cost Estimator