DCCCD, Mountain View Campus Dallas, TX

Mountain View College exemplifies the rewards of an extraordinary site and an open-minded client. Deep on the 210-acre parcel, the architects discovered an arroyo of such natural beauty that they made it the nexus of their design.

A truly unique solution was needed for this 10,000 student campus because the 210-acre site was neatly bisected by a deep arroyo. While this arroyo was a spot of natural beauty, it was also a significant barrier that would need to be bridged in order to make full and proper use of the site for buildings, parking and athletic facilities. The resulting plan nestles half of the campus buildings on each side of the arroyo focusing views into this spot of great natural beauty.

Two spacious air-conditioned pedestrian bridges spanning the creek, which meanders through its natural watercourse, join each half of the campus. Parking, roads and playfields are thus better able to use the flatter, more easily developed portions of the site. One drawback of this solution was that the site's natural topography would prevent the building from being visible from any of the surrounding roadways; a potentially difficult problem for a fledgling campus anxious to attract students. A helicopter ride over the site followed by an on-site presentation of a large-scale model of the proposed solution convinced officials that the design was correct.

The architecture reinforces the importance of the site. Building lines are strongly horizontal, and forms are slender and colored in the hues of the limestone creek beds which they face. This is a composition of planes, which hug the ground plane respecting the lines of the Texas prairie. Landscaping is integral with the buildings and blends seamlessly with the natural vegetation of the arroyo.

Recognition

  • 1971 Merit Award
    1971 Merit Award Texas Society of Architects
  • 1971 Design Award
    1971 Design Award American Institute of Architects, Dallas Chapter

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