The Southwestern College snack bar cafe is located in a dynamic part of the campus and serves students using classrooms in close proximity and adjacent parking areas. The project consists of demolition of an old snack bar structure and construction of a new 3,400 square foot café in its place. The café consists of three distinct parts: 1) the kitchen and preparation area with direct access to a small service yard for deliveries and trash pick-up; 2) the servery and indoor seating space, featuring display cases and kiosks; and 3) the outside shaded patio, featuring café tables and a seat wall with a dramatic curve detail.
Large folding glass doors open the interior seating area to the outdoor patio on two sides of the café building. Clerestory windows allow for natural light to illuminate the servery and indoor seating spaces. The design of the new café relates to the aesthetic of the existing campus by using concrete and glass as the main materials. The simple, subtle forms of the building also relate to the Mayan Revival design style of the campus, interpreted in a modern and classic expression.
The café is used extensively during the evening hours and, thus, was designed with an engaging lighting palette, attracting and inviting students into the spacious indoor dining area as well as the illuminated and heated outdoor patios.