Design begins with new ideas and passion to create a work of art for future populations to enjoy. When designing a hostel for young students, one must give them something to dream about, something to spark their imaginations and fuel their creativity. In creating this hostel, two different pieces of sculpture were fused together, thus creating one cohesive structure using different venues of light.
My goal was to create dynamic space inside the hostel for all guests to use and enjoy. The exterior structure of the hostel pushes the limits of what can be done with channel glass and pre-formed concrete. Four magnificent pieces of structural channel glass jutting outward allow new experiences for inhabitants. The material establishes its own voice in the building, changing the emotional responses of those inside. It pushes the human response to the edge giving guests views of the mountain range to the north. The roof curtain system that drapes over the entire building allows light to spread over and into spaces that would otherwise not be naturally lit. Channel glass wrapping around the heart of the hostel produces a soft lucidity inside. The interior programmed space is simple and caters to a variety of uses. This gives people the feeling of openness and freedom without their personal privacy being intruded upon.
The bridge crossing the atrium provokes the first emotional response inside the hostel. On the upper-cantilevered floors that climb up the north wall, the programs are very free to community space. The second floor has a bridge that spans across the atrium to the first floor below. This allows the guests to cross the threshold of the curtain wall to the outside sundeck. The studio that is programmed on the cantilevered front of the hostel is designed to allow natural, transparent light into the space. Its separation from the main body of the building makes this space a sacred sanctuary for guests. The north side of the gallery is equipped with a floor to ceiling glass window that spans twenty-two feet wide. This provides a beautiful view of the flatirons and the effect of floating over the ground. On the south side, the ceiling is designed to allow light to filter down the wall and illuminate the gallery. The ceiling of the gallery space is lowered to create intimacy and push the eye through the space and outside to the surrounding landscape.
On the fourth floor, the bar tube pierces through the south wall of the channel glass at a perpendicular angle, breaking the plane of the roof. Floor to ceiling glass walls give people inside a 360 degree view of the Flatirons to the west and lights of Denver to the south.
The design of the hostel is all about explaining the ideas of lucidity, Illumination, constant interaction of the people inside and the bonds between architecture and sculpture.
Status: School Project
Location: Mesa Trail, Boulder, Colorado