Early next year, a new pop-up lounge will arise near the Mercator Building at Zernike, offering the Faculty of Spatial Sciences (FSS) and the Centre for Information Technology (CIT) an additional gathering and learning space.
The lounge will include indoor and outdoor seating for fifty people and several restaurants, which will be open to everyone at the UG. The main purpose of the informal setting, however, is to create an international community at FSS.
‘Because we don’t have any teaching space in our own wing of the Mercator building, there is currently not enough interaction between our students and staff’, explains Mirjam Wempe, secretary to the faculty board. ‘Most of our lectures take place in the Duisenberg or the Kapteynborg buildings.’
In addition to the meet-and-relax area, the location will provide facilities for studio-based learning. ‘We have a lot of design classes, so that’s quite practical’, adds Wempe.
The lounge will not be suitable for other forms of education, though, because of the noise transmission within the pop-up, says UG spokesperson Anja Hulshof. Constructed from transparent polycarbonate and aluminium, it will be a light space, similar to the Zernike food court in the Kapteynborg’s courtyard.
The restaurants within the lounge will also allow for dismantling the canteen on the ground floor of the Smitsborg, giving extra space to the CIT.
The project comes from a master plan study the UG commissioned in cooperation with FSS, the CIT and the nearby Faculty of Economics and Business into a possible upgrade of the Mercator and its surroundings, says Hulshof.
The pop-up lounge should open its doors at the beginning of the second semester, unless ‘the current delivery times in the construction industry and the latest developments regarding corona’ cause a delay, adds the spokesperson.