New Undergraduate Centre and Aspiration Centre buildings for Wadham College, Oxford. The buildings are distinct from each other, with uniquely patterned facades that use varying degrees of transparency and opacity.

Eckersley O’Callaghan provided facade engineering services for two new buildings on Wadham College’s historic Oxford University site. The William Doo Undergraduate Centre contains a range of social spaces which has enhanced and improved the interactions of the Wadham student community. The Dr Lee Shau Kee Building creates a welcome centre for prospective students visiting one of the college’s inspiration days or summer schools.

The intent of the Dr Lee Shau Kee Building was to be light and uplifting. The facade is composed of opaque areas which are clad in glass panels with contrasting vertical metal fins between them. Windows are inset. The opaque modules are formed between the framework of metal fins and are in essence a series of shadow boxes. Each box has a metal backing at the rear and a glass panel at the face. 

The facade of the Undergraduate Centre plays with a similar idea of varying degrees of transparency, but in a distinct way that reflects its own identity and function.

The Undergraduate Centre is an expression of horizontality, which is visible through the pattern applied to the glass facade. The facade of the Undergraduate Centre is composed of panels of clear and opaque glazing with a printed polyvinyl butyral (PVB) interlayer which makes reference to the subtle range of colours of the college hall’s stained-glass windows, creating texture on the facade at a finer scale.

Oxford, UK

Wadham College