Zucker Family Graduate Education Center at the Clemson University Restoration Institute
The 52,000 SF Zucker Family Graduate Education Center (ZFGEC), facility located on waterfront property at dry dock no. 3 of the old Charleston Naval Base in North Charleston, SC, will house graduate electrical, computer, and mechanical engineering programs as well as the school’s graduate Digital Production Arts program. CURI campus management staff and industry partners will also share the office spaces.
The ZFGEC is intended to be the iconic core for Clemson’s Restoration Institute campus. The expansive, light-filled building takes full advantage of its Cooper River site, accommodating up to 200 students in a variety of leading-edge learning spaces. The ZFGEC will also serve as Clemson University’s continuing education facility in the Lowcounty. The building houses offices, classrooms, conference rooms, a 250 seat auditorium, café, gallery space, fitness center, and outdoor gathering and learning spaces.
The new facility reflects the character of the industrial shipyards that flank the northeast edge of the property. Built on a concrete podium to protect it from flood waters, and to lessen the impact on the EPA brownfield site, the structure provides elevated views of the Arthur Ravenel Jr. (Cooper River) Bridge while providing covered parking for building occupants. The exterior is clad with composite metal panels that echo the industrial spirit of the old naval yard. The interior instructional and faculty spaces enjoy a light filled interior, served by an entry lobby that features salvaged lumber from the warehouse that formerly occupied the site. The facility employs sophisticated and energy efficient systems to heat, cool, and light the spaces, and is virtually connected to Clemson’s main campus through state-of-the-art technology.
The ZFGEC is targeting LEED Gold certification, with sustainable design strategies that include remediation of a brownfield site, an 8,000 square foot green roof, and high-performance building systems.