Northwest Corner Building, Columbia University that located in United States, was designed by Rafael Moneo. Moneo has intelligently stacked the complex program, imparting great flexibility to the labs, and linked the structure to the chemistry and physics buildings with sky bridges, laying the groundwork for greater interaction to occur among the sciences. The building’s transparency furthers this potential for connectivity. But where the building evidences the architect’s great skill at fostering community, it falls short on forging a meaningful conversation with the buildings around it.
The hulking steel and glass building is a jarring addition to Columbia’s classically planned campus and to its mostly masonry architecture. As styles go, Modernism is a great equaliser, able to fit comfortably with almost any style and capable of restating the rules of classical architecture without being sentimental or historicist. But rather then learn from the past, the Northwest Corner Building has regrettably left it behind.