Live Oaks

Career Campus
Live Oaks Project Description

As Great Oaks looks to further grow and refine their Career Education program at Live Oaks Career Campus, MSA Design has worked to plan their near term, as well as future improvements through Masterplanning.

As an innovative career training program, the client set out to create spaces that reinforced their priorities: respecting the student; activating the learning environment; and creating a sense of place.


A Phased Approach

The first phase of improvements includes a nearly 200,000 SF interior renovation and a new 7,500 SF entry addition with site improvements and an exterior refresh. The existing facility was laid out in a very symmetrical and orthogonal organization. This being a career training campus, they recognize the non-linearity of their students’ journeys with hands on training that was paired with the more linear core-curriculum in tandem.

Exterior Ground View

The Campus Site Strategy

The site was reorganize to enter off axis of the building “spine” along an entry drive lined with trees that create a sense of discovery and reveal as a guest approaches the drop-off area in front of their new entry plaza. The site circulation takes into account different user’s (students, faculty, guests, and busses) and their circulation patterns at different time of day for both convenient traffic as well as the experience of arrival


Welcoming the Students

The new entry provides a sense of arrival and identity that is a beacon from all sides of the site. Its angular form cuts through the existing building, bringing light in and providing visual continuity through a shared double height common space as soon as you enter the front doors. The new entry also reinforces security with the administration suite flanking the vestibule to filter guests when the doors are locked during the day. The classrooms and labs are reorganized linking related career paths with adjacent spaces to create “academies” that group shared resources. All of the core curriculum is located on the 2nd floor overlooking the large, active commons space. Break out areas are created along circulation down the corridors, and off the commons with a grand stair.

Lobby A
Lobby B
Lobby Finish

Guiding Design Principles

To provide flexibility and opportunity, MSA reorganized the existing building by overlaying a simple system of Linear and Non-Linear Architecture to create a more complex and interesting learning environment that better reflected the complexity of the student experience. Links, Nodes, and Paths – also thought of as Connections, Community, and a Network of Choices – are the elements deployed across the design to create a connected network for the new Linear & Non-Linear learning environment.

Commons A
Commons B