Category I: Culinary Arts College



This project category is to develop a design for a Culinary Arts College. Steel construction offers students great benefits in this endeavor, as it is ideal for covering long-spans without sacrificing flexibility and aesthetic lightness, multi-story buildings, and quick delivery and assembly in congested urban environments. Steel must be used as the primary structural material and contain at least one space that requires long-span steel structure, with special emphasis placed on innovation in steel design.

The project will concentrate on formulating specific thoughtful concepts and designs and carrying these ideas to a detailed level. The project should be developed with an integrative approach to building materials and systems—structural, environmental, enclosure, etc.—while maintaining an overall design concept. Participants will develop a selected physical area of the project in greater detail considering the building’s structural and technical issues (lighting, acoustics, sanitary facilities, mechanical, and environmental controls) through larger-scale drawings showing structure, mechanical systems, facades, fenestration, etc. Through rendered perspectives and elevations, the proposals should demonstrate surface qualities including material, color, texture, and light.

Along with structural, tectonic and technical issues above, designs should respond to context (larger regional influences of geography, topography and latitude), climate (sun, wind, light and water), and culture (patterns of interaction rising from human occupation of place). Projects should be designed in a socially and environmentally responsible manner. Additionally projects should demonstrate the manner by which they reduce dependencies on non-renewable resources.

The Culinary Arts College will draw from local restaurants for some of its faculty and will use them to provide externships for students. “On-location” sessions and walking tours will allow its students to experience everything from the behind-the-scenes action in the cities kitchens to the bustle of seasonal and farmers markets. Students will need to conduct research in the design of culinary arts educational facilities.

The general program is outlined below. The program should guide development of a rich sequence of spaces and uses, including integration of some type of outdoor space within the building related to your concept, the program, the site, or these in some combination.


Teaching Kitchens 
1250 sf each
  Professionally equipped teaching kitchens with top-quality, energy efficient commercial cooking equipment including ranges and ovens, refrigerators and mixers.
Pastry Kitchen
    1250 sf

Professional pastry kitchen with steam-injected triple-deck ovens, and a professional-quality dough sheeter.

450 sf each
Demonstration Laboratory
    900 sf
  Kitchen arranged for faculty-conducted demonstrations for groups of students.    
Lecture Hall 
    1500 sf
  For lectures, exhibits, and audio-visual presentations. The lecture hall is an ideal space to highlight the use of long-span steel structure.
    1800 sf
  Reference library with computer terminals available to all students seven days a week.    
Wine Room
    650 sf
  Must have full ventilation (so cooking odors from the pastry kitchens don't intrude), bright incandescent light and white tabletops (for accurate wine viewing), and ample bottle storage space (including temperature-controlled Sub-Zero refrigeration and built-in cabinetry).    
Student Lounge
    450 sf
Bake Shop
    600 sf
  Must be accessible when school areas are closed and includes: seating area (250sf), service counter (75sf), kitchen area (175sf), food storage (50sf), and garbage / delivery area (50sf).    
    3000 sf
  Student-run restaurant with its own kitchen (approximately one-third the areas of the restaurant) and a seating capacity for 80 people. The dining area of the restaurant is an ideal space to highlight the use of long-span steel structure.    
Public Restrooms 
    As Required by Code
  Must be handicapped accessible.    
Receiving Area
    900 sf
  Main storage area including walk-in refrigerator and freezer as well as dry storage space. Ingredients are distributed from this area to the individual kitchens.    
Trash Area 
    300 sf
Administrative Offices
  Director's Suite
  400 sf
  Including an office for the director and workspace for assistants, this suite supports the administrative business of the Institute (finances, planning, personnel, programming, public relations and building maintenance).    
  Admissions Office
  350 sf
  Career Services 
  300 sf
  Staff Room 
  250 sf
  Provide a pleasant relaxing area for staff breaks.    
  Faculty Area
   400 sf
Outdoor Space(s)
    TBD by Participant
Total Program Area 
(not including circulation, toilets and mechanical)   21,250 net square feet
Total Building Area 
    +/- 27,625 gross square feet

The Culinary Arts College should be sited on a city lot to be chosen by the faculty sponsor and/or the student. The criteria for site selection include the following:

Size:  the site should be no larger than a single city block
Context:  the site should be located in an easily reached area of the city
Access:  the site should have access to public transportation such as light rail, commuter rail, subway, or bus

Refer to the International Building Code and the local zoning ordinance for information on parking requirements, height restrictions, set backs, easements, flood, egress, and fire containment. Accessibility guidelines need to be followed; refer to the Americans with Disabilities Act, along with the principals of Universal Design.

The design project must be conceived in structural steel construction. A strategy should be considered that evaluates a method for taking advantage of steel’s properties and characteristics in order to conceptualize and propose a critical evaluation of the design solution.   

Steel Competition Program (PDF)

Competition Program written and developed by: Ann Pitt, Wentworth Institute of Technology; Carol Burns, Taylor & Burns Architects/Wentworth Institute of Technology; Eric Ellis, ACSA; & Nancy Gavlin, AISC.