Integrating CMU into Architectural Design Studio Curriculum

Grantee: North Carolina State University
Principle Investigator: Dana Gulling
Year: 2021
Project Number: 2021.004

Educating the next generation of designers is a key objective of the NCMA Foundation. This project will integrate concrete masonry into an existing architectural design studio to expose students to members products and design possibilities

Program Details:

This grant will enable inclusion of concrete masonry into a design studio at the North Carolina State University School of Architecture. In this studio, architecture students will research, analyze, and design buildings using concrete masonry products for architectural and structural applications with support from industry and professionals. The project will enable concrete masonry to be added to existing lecture courses directly integrating knowledge of concrete masonry, gained by that coursework, into a new concrete masonry-focused architecture design studio. The funding will allow the school to put in place framework to better link design studio to industry, the profession, and student work with CMU in previous courses.

The new studio will be divided into 2 projects: Project 1 will be an initial design exercise, in which students will design a small structure or pavilion, using a custom concrete masonry unit. Project 2 will be a full building design in which students will design buildings that use concrete masonry products structurally (e.g. load bearing walls, exterior backup, etc.), architecturally (e.g. the building’s exterior finish face), and non-load bearing walls when appropriate. During these two projects, the studio will participate in associated activities with local industry and architectural practitioners.