Joel Sanders Architect

UVA Sound Lounge

Sound Lounge, the newly renovated student lounge at the University of Virginia School of Architecture, integrates state of the art audio-visual technologies to transform this formerly deserted 2000 square foot double-height lobby into an interactive public realm that updates Jefferson’s ideal of the “academical village” for the 21st century. Holosonic speakers, installed within three sonic cones, project columns of directed sound audible only to people within the zone defined by three blue ellipses inscribed within the carpet beneath them.

A collective alternative to ubiquitous mobile devices like iPods that tend to isolate individuals from one another, the cones create “sound showers,” intimate media micro-climates, that enable users to design their own soundscapes by tapping into one of three closed-circuit channels that connect them with a range of sites – personal, local, and global. Sitting on comfortable mobile furniture, students and teachers, alone or in groups, can share their personal playlists, experience university simulcast lectures and events or listen to real-time broadcasts from across the globe.

Location Charlottesville, VA
Size 2,000 SF
Year 2009
With Karen Van Lengen Architect
Photos Scott Smith