Building of the Month (February)

Our building for February, as interpreted by Bill Hunt, our ‘artist in residence’, is Student Residences – Ziggurat, University of East Anglia

Architect: Denys Lasdun and Partners

Date: 1964-1968

Location: Norwich, University of East Anglia

Listing: Grade 2* Listed

Denys Lasdun had first proposed this type of building configuration for Cambridge University but was then commissioned for the residences project at University of East Anglia in 1962.

The ‘Ziggurats’ at University of East Anglia took the initial ideas for Cambridge  and refined them to utilise the sloping topography of the site.  The design was amalgamated with the adjacent ‘Teaching Wall which runs for 400m to the north side of the residences with linking walkways.

The section through the building is ‘stepped’ down towards the parkland to the south with lower ceiling heights to the rear of the student rooms and higher ceilings and storey height glazing facing the parkland.

The roof is capped with the signature expressed service towers as seen on many of Lasdun’s designs.

The building underwent a major refurbishment which was completed in 2007 and was adopted as a pilot study for English Heritage to help redefine the legislation for the listed building process and the implementation of conservation management plans for large estates.

A Few Notes:

  • Lasdun commented that he had the intention that students could get from their bed to classes in 5 minutes – hopefully fully clothed.
  • The building was seen by millions of music fans after being selected as the album artwork by British garage outfit The Streets for their Computers and Blues record released in February 2011,