The University of Buffalo’s School of Architecture and Planning brought in teams of faculty and students to develop ideas for a unique solution for the mailroom in their renovated home in UB’s Hayes Hall. To solicit architecturally innovative concepts for the mailroom – probably one of the most mundane of spaces – the University held a design competition. Boston Valley Terra Cotta will be fabricating “Bibelot,” the winning design in UB’s Hayes Hall mailbox design competition.
The winning design, developed by student Nicholas Traverse, Erkin Özay, assistant professor of architecture, and Gregory Delaney, clinical assistant professor of architecture, showcases the traditional ornamental aspect of terra cotta but with a modern twist. The terra cotta panels will be etched with “terms of inspiration for designers and planners”. The colorfully glazed pieces will extend out of the mailroom to activate the space just beyond the window and visually draw the viewer to the rest of the assembly.
Ten teams participated in the competition creating a variety of design plans that pushed the limits of terra cotta’s structural and ornamental potential. A blind jury selected the winner based on design creativity, constructibility, accessibility and functionality.
Second place was awarded to associate professors of architecture Omar Khan and Laura Garófalo for “Stratum,” a structural stack of modular bricks inspired by the geologic formation of clay strata. Third place went to “Radiant,” a glowing carousel of backlit, blue-glazed terra cotta modules, was developed by students Randy Fernando, Daniel Kleeschulte, Ashwini Karve, Garrett Brown, and Miguel Guitart, visiting associate professor of architecture.
To read more details regarding the competition and the submission, check out the University of Buffalo’s School of Architecture and Planning website.