The John Brooks Williams Natural Sciences and Technology Center is a breath of fresh air on St. Edward’s University campus. The large two-story building on the South end of campus features windows in every possible direction but down. Windows into classrooms and labs span the building’s sides, while the interior halls get a peak into the simply designed, spacious classrooms as well.
The high ceilings on the second floor give way to skylights perhaps emphasizing the expansive and never-ending nature of science. The building seems to be a composed of continuous portals for peering into other spaces. Whether it be through windows, glass panels, or balconies opening to the first floor, the building gives a nod to the scientific method by encouraging observation.
The whitewashed brick on the building’s exterior combined with the tastefully exposed concrete pillars and metal piping on the interior represent beauty in the basic and logical. Bamboo wood, metal, and concrete constructs throughout the building perhaps represent the elements of natural science, just as the earthy tones of beige, muted gold, moss green, and hints of eggplant scattered around the buildings interior exemplify the calm of the natural world.
Each of the building’s entrances features 3 grand pillars, each of a different shape: round, square, and angled. These pillars lend both literal and metaphorical strength to the building, announcing its presence in the community. A greenhouse rests atop one set of pillars symbolizing the purpose and inspiration of the building’s inhabitants.