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Unique Facade Distinguishes Student Center at New England Conservatory

Student Center at New England Conservatory

Innovative metal panels and windows helped to satisfy the design and performance requirements of the New England Conservatory Student and Life Performance Center. 

The first New England Conservatory building to be added in 60 years, the 135,000 square-foot building sits at 10 stories tall and holds over 250 residential units in addition to orchestra and jazz rehearsal rooms, a black box opera workshop, the conservatory library, 250 student rooms, a dining commons, and spaces for collaboration and gathering. 

The conservatory wanted a unique identity and more creative expression for their new campus center. Products from CENTRIA, a leading building envelope science company, helped achieve those goals. The facade features Versawall insulated metal panels in pewter, EcoScreen Cascade perforated screenwall, and Formavue windows, which nodded to the institution’s rich history, and aided in the presentation of an innovative, one-of-a-kind aesthetic.

The combination of the terra cotta rain screen, staggered windows, and 40-foot-tall perforated metal screen on the façade reflects the conservatory’s ambitions to be creative and contemporary, to combine tradition and innovation.

On the building façade, EcoScreen contributes to the formation of a 40-foot tall metal screen to act as a curtain which allows for glimpses of the performance spaces and activity within. The panels help distinguish the curved form of the performance screen, creating a shimmering veil expression. The screen also diffuses street noise, and filters southern light into the orchestra rehearsal space. The Cascade profile of the panels provided a vertical texture that catches light in dramatic ways.

EcoScreen aluminum panels were also used to conceal some of the building’s mechanical equipment at the penthouse level. Additionally, Versawall lightweight insulated panels clad the building where it faces an inner alley, creating long, sleek lines and providing superior protection against the elements.

The modular aspect of the products made the system easy to panelize and install on large surfaces. 

The Student and Life Performance Center qualified for LEED Silver certification.


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