Tulane University's Barbara Greenbaum House, a new student residence building, opened this fall on the school's New Orleans campus. Forming one side of Newcomb Lawn, it completes an historic ensemble started by Josephine Louise (JL) House, a student residence, and Newcomb Hall, both designed by architect James Gamble Rogers in 1912. Together, Greenbaum House and JL House form Tulane’s third residential college.
Designed by New York-based firm Architecture Research Office around 100-year-old oak trees, the design is responsive to its location and establishes a close relationship with the existing historic buildings. The red brick used on the exterior closely matches that used on the adjacent buildings and the addition of this building to the lawn creates a new edge between Tulane and the surrounding neighborhood. The building is designed with a courtyard that is a gathering place and hub of student life. All social and study areas face out onto the courtyard and keep the focus on the campus.
“Our challenge was to create a modern student residence that integrated with the historic character of its site while enhancing Tulane’s goal to strengthen the relationship between social and academic life,” said Adam Yarinsky, Principal of Architecture Research Office, in a press release. “The design serves the University’s mission to reinforce the quality of the educational experience for students.”
The 80,000-square-foot building has two wings of four and six stories that contain 256 bedrooms, extensive social and study rooms, a multi-purpose event space with a demonstration kitchen, a classroom and apartments for a faculty-in-residence and community director. Circulation spaces on the upper floors were designed to encourage student interaction and feed into the social areas for informal gatherings.
The building was designed as a high-quality, durable and environmentally conscious structure. The building’s design provides flood protection as the ground floor level is elevated four feet about surrounding grade, all major mechanical spaces are on the ground floor and the building has a gas-fired emergency generator on the roof. The building, which is targeting LEED-Gold certification, boasts several sustainable elements including extensive daylighting.