2020 | UNCSA Semans Arts & Administration Building Addition & Renovation | Winston-Salem, NC

Originally designed by the New York firm Hardy Holtzman and Pfeifer Associates and the local Winston Salem firm Newman, Van-Etten and Winfree, Semans Library has served the NC School of The Arts since its dedication in 1978. Replaced by a new Library and Learning Commons in 2015, the space was seen as a central location for a new administrative commons and expansion space for arts programs.

When we first entered the NCSA campus as outsiders, we were struck by our perception of how creative this place must be with high school and college students dedicated to the arts of all types. However, we also noted that we could neither see the art, nor hear the music. Spaces between our buildings define places. In our interview, we said, “Lets express the energy, excitement and the creativity that is here.”

Our glass expansion was envisioned to express this creativity and enrich the outdoor green space by displaying the music, dance, and drama spaces to the outside. We wanted everyone to see art, dance, and music being created and we wanted the physical building to be part of that focus.

During the early design and programming phases, we found that the budget allowed this project to include both the renovation and a significant expansion of the existing library space.  The $8.52M project included 8,500 SF of new space and the renovation of the existing 29,633 SF old library space within the Workplace Building to support a program of general offices, academic spaces and operational support areas, interior furnishings, data and information systems, and a beautiful landscape.

Surface 678 collaborated with us to design an active campus landscape that included exterior performance and interactive spaces. Civil and structural engineering was performed by NV5,  MEP engineering by Atlantec Engineers, and construction by Davie Construction, Co.