university of texas flawn academic center

austin, tx

The Flawn Academic Center is located on the original 40 acres of The University of Texas campus in Austin, TX. Originally built as a library in 1964, the building over the years underwent multiple re-purposing and partial renovations. Most notable was the 1984 renovation which enclosed the fourth floor exterior courtyard at the heart of the building. As a result of the original library program and the enclosing of the central courtyard, natural light became a scarcity throughout the upper floors of the building.

This renovation re-purposed the third and fourth floors for departmental and administrative spaces. The client requested a design solution which would minimize the outward effects of the renovation on the exterior, in order to maintain the original character of the building. The project began with programming efforts for each of the end user departments and a design strategy was developed which would organize the various departments around common cores of circulation and shared meeting rooms. Further, the design re-introduces as much natural light into the center of the building where the core circulation takes place. Details are limited and purposeful, with selective colors coding each department in efforts to help with way finding, and a common carpet with each department’s color was used to tie the overall scheme together. In the common areas, materials remain neutral, allowing light to become the focus of the space.


Completed by Jacobs; project design and production led by Alan Knox.