Goldring/Woldenberg Business Complex, A.B. Freeman School of Business, Tulane University

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New Orleans, Louisiana, USA

85,000 square feet / 8,000 square meters


A.B. Freeman School of Business is comprised of two buildings, Goldring/Woldenberg Hall I and Hall II, located on McAlister Drive, a busy pedestrian path in the heart of Tulane University’s campus. Pelli Clarke Pelli Architects’ design unifies the two buildings into one academic complex with a new 4,275 square meter (46,000 square feet) four-story addition and a 4,275 square meter (46,000 square feet) renovation of a classroom, two auditoriums, and two lecture halls.

Its design of openness and transparency provides students and faculty flexible classrooms, an incubator space for student start-ups, expanded breakout stations, a new financial analysis lab, and administrative offices emphasize visibility and approachability to enhance community learning and collaboration. This allows students, faculty, and visitors to work in various spaces instead of a fixed station. This is within trend of having flexible spaces for a fluid working environment.

The project began without a prescribed budget or program. However, PCPA met the challenge by using Revit/BIM from the very first day on the project. This allowed us to simultaneously catalog the existing spaces, track needs for new expansion, and commission an extremely detailed cost estimate very early in the process. Within months, the program and budget for the building were set and have been held to throughout the process.

PCPA conducted many intensive workshops, interviewed stakeholders, toured their existing facilities, and defined a program. Once this was done, PCPA studied multiple means of laying out the new program: putting some program areas in renovated portions of the existing building and others in the new addition. What results was a balanced efficiency of reorganization and expansion of the school.