Purdue University Owen Hall Laundry

West Lafayette, IN

Imagine doing laundry in a space that is devoid of natural light, stifling hot with no air conditioning, a low ceiling and in general, a drab and uninspiring environment. Imagine further that you are a college student and so any study or socializing opportunities are impossible to engage in. Purdue University envisioned Owen Laundry as yet another space within a residence hall that would enhance the student life experience, thereby attracting and retaining students.

Rowland Design improved lighting using a combination of fluorescent, pendant and track lighting, bringing more energy into the space despite a low ceiling. Separate areas were created for doing laundry, studying and tv watching. Glass partitions were used to not only bring light in through all areas, but to also create a necessary sound barrier. Program requirements included adding the much needed air conditioning, additional washers and dryers, and upgrading furniture and finishes, creating splashes of bright color throughout. Another entry was designed to encourage students to come in and use the space, now revitalized – another opportunity to stimulate learning.

In 2009, Owen Hall Laundry was recognized by American School & University magazine as an Outstanding Design Award winner.