Arch Design Award
Interior Design Category
St. Gallen, Switzerland
Carolin Michalka, Jessica Mentz, Zhiyang Chiu, Patrik Uihlein, Dariusz Florczak, Stuart Dickens
Peter Wuermli, 2022
The University of St. Gallen is a public research university that specialises in business administration, economics, law, and international affairs. The university aims to become a symbol of innovation in education and the new learning centre, called SQUARE, is an important step towards achieving this goal.
SQUARE is an experimental field for new, future-oriented forms of learning and teaching. It was designed not to be just another campus building, but rather a place of surprising encounters and mutual inspiration. In order to achieve this, a dedicated team curates a programme of educational and cultural activities that change daily, ranging from events with the participation of external guests to workshops, masterclasses and courses, and students working in groups on their projects.
Evolution Design was tasked with developing a comprehensive interior concept that can accommodate countless learning and event scenarios that take place in SQUARE. In order to bring the new learning and teaching formats to life, we developed a toolbox concept – a set of elements like furniture, presentation equipment, a foldable stage (flat pack), rugs and plants – all of which can be easily combined to create distinctive layouts and atmospheres throughout the building. To increase the spatial versatility, most items – from chairs and stools to whiteboards, tables and plants – are fitted with castor wheels allowing the items to be moved around freely.
SQUARE is an inspiring place that creates unbroken connectivity and multifunctionality, and encourages crucial dialogue between science, society, business, politics, and culture.