Projects

More than 50 projects were submitted to the Campus of the Future competition by U-M students from a wide variety of majors and backgrounds. Just how is Michigan being reimagined for the 21st century? Each and every entry is different and brings a unique perspective to the discussion.

Explore the full list of project descriptions below by category and come engage with featured entries at the project showcase on October 26, 2017.

  • C2D Hub

    The C2D Hub project is dedicated to developing a private dental clinic model that is ecologically sustainable, can be built in any environment and serves as a multi-purpose learning space for its community. This team is currently conducting interviews with faculty, staff and students of the U-M School of Dentistry, practicing dentists and members of the community to determine the must-have elements of the model. After a visit to the Earthship community in Taos, NM, this project will confer with the architecture firm SmithGroup JJR to help shape the clinic’s blueprints. Deliverables will also include a syllabus for a mini course on sustainable dental buildings and practices and a toolkit for developing the clinic of the future, to be distributed to incoming dentistry students at orientation.

  • Lorch Hall Lives

    Lorch Hall was the finest facility for an architecture program in the country at its completion in 1928. However, it was rapidly outgrown, forcing the architecture program to move to North Campus and jeopardizing the future use of the original Central Campus building. The building’s namesake had hoped that it would expand from an L-shaped structure to a quadrangle. This project, operating in an alternative reality, follows through on that plan by employing advances in digital fabrication as well as bacteria and agricultural waste to create an ever-growing, living lattice framework for new construction. This project operates at the scale of the building, with a keen awareness of its surroundings. Deliverables will include a digitally fabricated mock-up of the design and renderings of it in context.

  • Michigan Aquaponics

    Michigan Dining has made significant strides in increasing the overall sustainability of the dining halls at U-M, but there still remains room for improvement. Our student organization suggests that improvement can be achieved by implementing aquaponics: a combination of conventional aquaculture (raising aquatic animals in tanks) with hydroponics (cultivating plants in water) in a symbiotic environment. Preliminary projections estimate that a system of just two 3,750-gallon tanks would be able to consistently supply a dining hall with enough food to serve all of the students who eat there. This project’s proposed campus-scale solution will help educate all students on how we can create a tangible impact and promote a sustainable future, all while dining on wholesome food.

  • A Sustainable Living Community

    We are regularly told that Americans live an unsustainable lifestyle and that we need to consume, pollute and waste less. But what would a sustainable living situation look like? Our approach leverages U-M’s housing system to teach students the skills needed to live more sustainably—now and in the future. This project proposes that the university pilot a building-scale behavioral intervention for willing students to learn more about how sustainability education can move beyond the classroom and into residential life. The building could track energy, waste reduction, composting, use of public transportation, small-scale gardening and more—all in a social and supportive space. If successful, this project could be scalable to the whole campus, giving U-M an excellent opportunity to showcase its commitment to sustainability.

  • A Sustainable Living Complex

    The U-M campus of the future should intentionally connect students to the environment. One way to achieve that goal would be to build a Sustainable Living Complex, comprised of small living units for 30-50 students and shared learning and experimental spaces. The complex could be built on the grounds of the Matthaei Botanical Gardens, where the student farm and other resources would provide rich programming opportunities and embed students in an eco-friendly lifestyle. Suggested residents would include sophomores through seniors and a handful of graduate students from a variety of academic backgrounds: all driven to live sustainably and to lead that effort on campus, in the state and in the world. The physical infrastructure—centered around a large, multipurpose, “green” building—would actively support research, inquiry, risk-taking and creativity.

  • Sustainable Residence Halls

    The university houses about 10,000 students in 18 residence halls. These buildings represent a critical mass of energy usage and waste creation on campus, but they also provide a unique opportunity to make significant inroads in helping U-M achieve its campus sustainability goals. Operating at both the building and campus scale, this project intends to suggest ways to make U-M halls “greener.” One 􏰀deliverable will be a computer simulation of a redesigned residence hall. The team also plans to report on the positive environmental impact of such a redesign in comparison to the existing hall. It will advocate for involving the on-campus student population in the sustainability experience, in the hopes that it might inspire the environmentally conscious leaders of tomorrow.