Oslo’s independent business and economics school ‘BI’ have established a new unified campus in Nydalen, a regenerated commercial area in the centre of Oslo. Situated adjacent to the refurbished underground station, Campus Nydalen combinesOslo’s three previous separate business schools at Sandvika, Schous and Ekerberg under one roof. Each school originally offered different specialised courses, and it was an objective of BI to maintain each schools identity within the unified campus.
The new campus is a permeable, open and transparent building that exposes the activities in the building against the surrounding streets and public spaces. In addition to its educational function, the building acts as a meeting place, and is a focal point between the student environment and the surrounding business activities. Approximately 95,200m2 (GEA), the campus can accommodate 10-12,000 students, tutors, and administration staff. The campus is a commercial investment for BI, consisting of four buildings under one roof, three of which are occupied by the three original schools, one specializing in Executive studies, a second specializing in undergraduate courses in business marketing, and a third specializing in postgraduate and masters courses in business studies. The fourth building consists of commercially let shops, office space and Nydalen Athletic fitness centre.
Set within a regenerated urban environment north of the city centre, the campus occupies one large city block and is subdivided into four smaller blocks by two wide internal streets which slice through the campus forming a cross in plan. The building has ten levels, consisting of three levels of underground parking and a service bay, with seven levels of the student campus above ground.
Externally a limited pallet of materials has been used to create a unified composition. The different functions of the campus are highlighted to provide articulation to the spaces. The auditoria with their large coloured brick walls anchor the building into the site. The library, set within its glass box on the upper levels of the building, emphasized by the horizontal lines of the solar shading cap the building unifying it as one. The reclining northern facade facing away from the city is played down and clad in copper, whilst the remaining facades expose the asymmetrical rhythm of the stairs and structural concrete columns to provide a vertical emphasis which is further articulated by the timber-clad classrooms rooms and offices that are allowed to puncture through the facade between the columns.