Northern Kentucky University Central Plaza

Highland Heights, Kentucky

Located at the heart of Northern Kentucky University, the Central Plaza is the primary open community space that interconnects the campus. The original space was a vast open and rugged hard-scape defined by the brutalist concrete buildings that surround it.

The design introduces organic, human scale elements into the space and explores the relationship of people to their surrounding environment.

The time keeper is a dynamic stainless steel and stone trellis element that responds to the path of the sun and connects visitors to the circadian rhythm of the place.

The fountain is a series of massive, black granite slabs that seemingly float across the plaza, tilting this way and that, inviting visitors to sit or lay down and take a rest. Water flowing down the stone and water jets add to the mindful mediation of the place.

The sculpture celebrates human ingenuity. Located within the new rooftop garden, three mechanical units, that serve spaces below, sit proudly atop massive cast concrete pedestals.

The performance is a place for outdoor theater that connects the plaza to the Fine Arts Center below. Cascading down the hillside, the plaza mitigates the hillside and becomes an attraction all its own.

The transformation of the Central Plaza provides students and visitors with a place to gather, connects visitors to the surrounding campus.


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