Design for Innovation


Interview with Frank Weaver

“Are you going to ask me the same boring questions again?” Frank asked me as he sat down with his drawing set.

“Nope. I’m just going to let you talk to me,” I said.

“Write whatever you want and make it sound good,” he followed up.

Franklin University’s Frasch Hall was a project with a simple solution. The problem with the building was that there wasn’t a clear sense of circulation. There were two entrances, one connected to the parking lot, the other to the street. The question: how do you set the program so that there’s a sense of arrival at both entrances?

“When we started, there was just a really old, dated desk with some computers on it,” Frank said. “There wasn’t even anyone sitting at the desk. You’d come in and wonder where you were supposed to go.” The program called for structure so it was split up into a series of spaces: soft seating and a computer kiosk; the desk shifted closer to the parking lot entrance to provide some direction; an area set up with a media wall positioned relationally to the elevator. The line of sight was improved so that a person entering could see straight into the meeting stations. The building was also split between a public sphere consisting of student meeting rooms and collaboration space and a private, more faculty oriented sphere with conference rooms.

“This project was cool because we worked to set the standard and came up with the material pallets. We had the opportunity to showcase some high end materials,” Frank said. This project was a straightforward and simple solution with a huge impact: welcoming and engaging people with a clear arrival.
“Now make it sound like we know what we’re doing, would you?”

2011 Pop Culture Facts

The only way people knew it was Friday in 2011 was because Rebecca Black thought Friday was a forgettable day and couldn’t stop singing about it. Carly Rae Jepson was totally non-committal when she had conversations about people calling her. “Call Me Maybe?” Or maybe she was just being respectful of the people out there mourning the late Amy Winehouse. Thoughtful, young Carly. Bridesmaids also hit the theater that year, so we have the universe to thank for that masterpiece. Seriously. Kristin Wiig and Maya Rudolph could not be any funnier. After watching that, Wilson Phillips made a comeback too, so.... Spotify was released in the United States this year. Game of Thrones premiered on HBO and I know nothing about that. I do know a lot about New Girl though and Zooey Deschanel has taught twentysomethings more about life than any old history book. Holler atcher girl. Prince William also married the smokeshow that is Kate Middleton, making him the luckiest prince in all the land.