creating places that work

Center for Coastal and Deltaic Solutions

/ The Water Campus

Baton Rouge, LA

The Water Institute of the Gulf

Project Details


Baton Rouge Area Foundation,

Water Institute of the Gulf,

Commercial Properties Realty Trust


33,000 SF

Completion Date:

December 2017

Project Overview

Design a facility that will serve as both the digital research and development center and the organizational headquarters for a not-for-profit research institute.

Meet unique programmatic requirements and be the anchor for a planned live-work research campus.

Leverage a unique and historic site to provide a social gathering and community icon

Provide linkages between the larger community and its river resources and heritage


Sustainability Award

US Green Building Council LA, 2018

AIA Honor Award - Gold Rose

AIA Baton Rouge, 2018

Members Choice Award

AIA Baton Rouge, 2018

Best Office/Retail/Mixed-Use Development

ENR Texas & Louisiana, 2018


the River

It was our goal to allow the river to find expression through our design and reflect the ecologically sensitive nature of this unique site.

A perforated metal scrim serves as the exterior skin providing a “screened porch” for the community as the structure opens up and the building form rises to face the river and old city dock. Large windows on each floor offer views of the river, a bustling port, and the Mississippi River Bridge in the distance.

A series of steps and tiered seating allow the new first floor deck promenade to access the old city dock. A portion of the dock was refurbished to serve as event space in conjunction with the third-floor conference center.

First floor:

Open flexible office areas / private offices / cutting-edge wet lab and research facility

Second floor:

State-of-the-art office facilities

Third floor:

8,000 square foot conference center to host academic conventions / research conferences / private events

Where Form

Meets Function

To reflect the form and construction of nearby structures – particularly the Mississippi River Bridge – as well as to carry structural loads of a flowing river, a series of V-shaped columns support the structure and its large porch-like overhang on the east side, which offers a shaded area and entry to the building.

Approaching from the east, a new vehicular and pedestrian bridge was constructed to traverse the levee and provide access to the building and first floor promenade.

Taken together, this project allowed us to celebrate the pairing of the natural forms of the environment and the human design of the surrounding infrastructure – while providing a fitting space for top-tier research that is accessible to the community it serves.

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