Coventry University's New Student Center

Student Centers! There’s nothing like the smell of musty, old books, cheap particleboard furniture, and flickering fluorescent lights. Oh wait, we can think of a slightly cooler setup. How about cozy little nooks, bright pops of sunny yellow and the soft glow of suspended teardrop light fixtures?

Coventry University’s new 91,000-sq-ft student center seems much more conducive to a good ol’ fashioned study sesh than the latter. Dubbed ‘The Hub’ it provides a bright, spankin’ new informal learning center that is clean and safe, capable of accommodating 1000 geeks at a time. “It’s a fusion of library and common room,” says Russell Brown of Hawkins\Brown. “If the Hub as a whole is "home from home," informal learning is the "living room" for the campus.”

Photography: Hawkins\Brown