Rice University, Klein School of Social Sciences

Houston, TX
ROGERS PARTNERS Architects+Urban Designers
Houston, TX

The first building on a new formal axis of the expanding campus, Klein Hall for Social Sciences sets new precedents for site planning, massing, and materials on this lush academic enclave. 


The feasibility study for this 80,000-square-foot facility resulted in a dense academic community that enables both collaboration and privacy among the six departments housed in the building. A sunken inner courtyard accommodates mandatory and compensatory storm water storage in its landscaped basin, which transforms Rice University’s traditional formal courtyard pattern into a dynamic, productive ecological system. The building’s mass, envelope, and orientation take advantage of Houston’s climate to amplify breezes and mediate the blazing sun.


In 2015 we developed a new feasibility study to update our original pre-design work and are in ongoing conversations with Rice University on next steps for the new building.


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