Middlebury, VT – Union Studio Architecture & Community Design recently completed 158 beds of new student housing at Middlebury College in Middlebury, VT. The new housing for upper classmen was designed within 4 new residential style buildings on the western edge of the Middlebury campus. Three clustered buildings each include four townhouse style units that house 96 students in total. The townhouses each feature eight single bedrooms on three levels of living space – two on the main floor, two on the lower level, and four on the upper level. Each townhouse unit also features a full kitchen, a living room, three bathrooms and laundry facilities. With 12 such units spread over three separate buildings, the college is now able to provide an apartment-style alternative for students who would otherwise look to rent in the surrounding neighborhoods.
To balance the 96 bedrooms provided in the new student townhouses, The Ridgeline Residence Hall is a suite-style residential building with 62 bedrooms. Each residential suite contains a living room, shared bath and three to four single beds. The suites are arranged around large common rooms including an upper floor great room with views out to the Adirondack mountains to the west. The building features large common areas, shared kitchen facilities, and shared laundry facilities.
Situated away from the larger and more formal buildings that define Middlebury’s main campus, the new residences bridge an agrarian valley to the west, a residential neighborhood directly adjacent, and the nearby campus. Using simple forms, careful detailing, and regionally inspired materials and color, these new buildings sit comfortably with their neighbors while offering a stately face to visitors entering Middlebury from the west.
The new residences at Middlebury College arose from a collaboration between Union Studio Architecture & Community Design, Middlebury College, and an experienced private student housing developer. Union Studio Principal Douglas Kallfelz notes, “From the outset, we were inspired to imagine a model for student housing that could be at once entirely respectful of local patterns and context while meeting the modern needs of students and the college. Finding the right balance between community and innovation at Middlebury was a wonderful and satisfying challenge for all involved.”