SOM in the Press

SOM Delivers a Bold but Fitting Addition to the United States Air Force Academy

Photo © Magda Biernat

Source: The Architect's Newspaper

To approach an institution and campus like the United States Air Force Academy is to be awash in metaphors made concrete. The original campus by Walter Netsch of Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) was conceived as a theater of discipline in the rocky mesas above Coloardo Springs. There, using a seven-foot grid module inspired by tatami mats, Netsch produced a thickened, rectilinear landscape punctuated by the virtuosic 1963 Cadet Chapel. Sited across the honor court, and just offset from the view corridor Netsch sought to maintain is the 105-foot glass and steel skylight of Polaris Hall, the new home of the academy’s Center for Character and Leadership Development (CCLD) designed by SOM.

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