Virginia Commonwealth University just unveiled plans for their new Institute of Contemporary Art, a translucent museum designed by Steven Holl. The museum's form relies on cues from the site and allows for flexibility for visual and performance art installations. Slated to break ground in 2013, the ICA will also seek LEED Platinum certification and make use of geothermal heating and cooling, green roofs and energy efficient design. Translucent walls, a trademark of Steven Holl's designs, will provide ample, natural daylighting and help blur the boundary between the interior and exterior.
The Institute of Contemporary Art by Steven Holl will serve as both a gateway to VCU and a catalyst for contemporary art on the campus and throughout Richmond. The museum will provide space for visual and performing arts for the university as well as for the city. Situated on the corner of Belvidere and Broad Streets, ICA will serve as an important landmark at the intersection and then will branch out into wings that end in a sculpture garden. Large pivoting doors will open up to the garden and provide a direct link with the outdoors. The museum will include a performance space, classroom, sculpture garden, cafe, catering kitchen, offices, meeting rooms, and 10,000 sq ft of flexible exhibition space.
ICA will be clad in translucent glass and pre-weathered satin-finish zinc to complement its urban setting. The transparent nature of the building will soak up natural daylight during the day and at night will radiate light to the city. Green roofs will top the building to soak up rainwater and provide extra insulation. Geothermal wells will be used to provide energy efficient heating and cooling and the project will seek LEED Platinum certification. Construction is expected to begin in 2013 with a scheduled completion in 2015.
Images ©Steven Holl Architects