Check out this award-winning tunnel designed by a Charlotte firm

The UNC-Greensboro pedestrian tunnel designed by Wagner Murray Architects, P.A.
The UNC-Greensboro pedestrian tunnel designed by Wagner Murray Architects, P.A.

A Charlotte architecture firm won first place in the institutional category of an international competition, with a design for a pedestrian tunnel that extends under three railroad lines.

Wagner Murray Architects designed the project for UNC-Greensboro. The tunnel won in the Collaboration of Art + Design (CODA) Awards, an annual competition for projects that include commissioned art that drew 400 entries this year.

“Our goal was to create a safe, welcoming and convenient access for students coming to and from campus, while also helping the university achieve their vision of an iconic gateway feature,” said David Wagner, the project’s principal architect, in a statement. “That we were able to integrate a pedestrian access point with a heavily-trafficked railroad right-of-way, and elevate it with engaging design elements, has allowed a corridor previously unapproachable to people on foot to become a destination and a gathering place for the university community.”

The tunnel connects UNC-Greensboro’s campus with a footpath, and includes “a vaulted ceiling with ribbons of cast concrete painted in navy and gold, the university’s colors.”

The total cost of the project, which was completed in 2014, was $10 million.

What do you think of the design? And would you like to see something like this in Charlotte?

(You can see the other CODA winners, in categories such as residential, commercial and hospitality, online here.)

Ely Portillo: 704-358-5041, @ESPortillo