Mary Ann Cofrin Hall

University of Wisconsin – Green Bay

The 129,800 square foot Cofrin Academic Hall completed on the campus of UW-Green Bay is an energy-efficient building that serves as an exceptional academic center, natural museum, facility offices and sustainable teaching center. The facility features contemporary architecture that matches that of the campus, multi-media displays and consumes half the energy of a comparable building designed to meet State Energy Codes.

Multi-Use Classroom Spaces: The classroom spaces were planned by our designer team and audio-visual specialists with faculty input to ensure that every seat has an unobstructed view of the teaching area. There are four classroom sizes: 120-seat, 75-seat, 45-seat and 22-seat. Each 120-seat and 75-seat classroom has power and data outlets at each seat. All the 75-seat classrooms provide tiered seating with movable and fixed tables allowing the user greater flexibility for non-lecture events. Multiple projection screens and illuminated writing boards are provided in most of the classrooms. A touchpad screen located at the instructor’s workstation controls media sources, sound volume, room lighting and darkening shades at the skylights. Windows were provided along the corridor system to allow students to view class work.

The project also presented an opportunity for new facility office spaces. The spaces were designed to allow for collaboration in common areas as well as private offices for faculty and staff. The area was designed to invite daylighting into the common and private office spaces via skylights, special glazing and borrowed and transom lights. The mechanical and electrical systems were designed to not only conserve energy and offer cost effective operation, but also allow for flexibility when spaces change in the future.

Campus Connection: The University required the facility to be connected to the library via the University’s underground walkway system. Through a series of design charrettes, the design team also felt it necessary to connect the hall to the University Union, thus creating a new quad for the campus. The idea was taken a step further by excavating a large amount of earth on the buildings west side – which faces the quad – in turn lowering the “campus green” to the level of the underground walkway system. This design solution allowed students an exterior visual relief (daylighting) that helped them orient themselves to the remainder of the campus.

green bay,


new build

project type


square feet


platinum design

Facility Highlights

  • Building Integrated Photovoltaic (BIPV) systems used to offset building electrical costs
  • South-facing passive solar panels used to pre-heat outside makeup air
  • Cistern in the courtyard captures rainwater for irrigating native plant species
  • Office and classroom floors are carpeted with low-volatile organic compound (VOC) adhesive; carpeting is recyclable
  • Bamboo, linoleum, cork, and rubber from recycled tires are used as floor coverings in four different gathering spaces
  • Porcelain tile used for the concourse level corridors and plaza level toilet room flooring is derived from 95% post-production waste
  • Classroom walls have wool carpeting panels, reducing the use of nylon derived from crude oil
  • LEED Platinum Design
  • Custom Climate Control
  • Optimizes natural lighting
  • Photovoltaic System
  • Laboratories  – Nursing / Environmental Design