Original features

June 4, 2009

The sweeping curves and reflective glass of the six-storey Marjorie and Arnold Ziff Building ensure it is a powerful presence at the main gateway to the University of Leeds.

The £16 million building houses the university's new council chamber as well as a wide range of student services and offices for the senior management team.

It was opened by benefactor Marjorie Ziff last week, on her 80th birthday.

Designed by Leeds architects Farrell and Clark LLP, the building is one of the greenest on campus, incorporating such energy-efficient features as high levels of insulation, sun shades on the windows and chilled beams that cool the air by pumping water through pipes in the ceiling.

The first-floor Cafe Maia also has an eco-friendly theme, with a textured wall made from coconut shells.

The building was funded by the Marjorie and Arnold Ziff Charitable Foundation in the largest philanthropic donation the university has ever received.

Arnold Ziff was a successful businessman who studied at Leeds in 1944 before being called up for national service.

He sat on the university's governing council for 11 years and died in 2004.

The building marks the first stage of an ambitious £300 million programme at Leeds, which is to include a fitness centre, a new school of law, a centre dedicated to energy research, a £28 million refurbishment of the library and accommodation for 500 students.

Please send any suggestions for this architectural series to: matthew.reisz@tsleducation.com.

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