Gooch/Dillard Residence Area

Date: 1984
Location: Alderman Road and Stadium Drive

Gooch/ Dillard

Gooch/Dillard residence area

Gooch/Dillard was built in response to a housing crisis. In a thirteen-year period (1966-79), enrollment had more than doubled from 7,785 to 16,179 students, resulting in what University officials called a “severe shortage of dormitory space” and an “immediate student housing shortage.” A residential college planned on University-owned property in the Birdwood area appeared to be the solution, but was abandonedwhen it proved financially unfeasible. Advocates of the residential college model attempted to have the Gooch and Dillard built as such, but time was of the essence and money was always an issue. What resulted was a far cry from a residential college, but it did provide 655 sorely needed beds.

Designed by internationally renowned architect Edward Larabee Barnes, the upperclass residential complex was built into a challenging terrain without radically modifying or destroying the natural lay of the land. The nine buildings are separate from each other but tied together by material and arrangement. Architecturally, the brick material fits in with the other brick structures around campus. The complex’s two arms embrace the gully that cuts through the sloping landscape. Barnes' strength lies in the residence's exterior placement and expression, not in its internal layout.

The interior arrangement of Gooch/Dillard is that of a suite, with four private bedrooms rooms upstairs and two downstairs. Each suite has a living room and a bathroom, but no kitchen facilities. Two common kitchens service the complex, but most students take meals at nearby Runk Dining Hall instead of cooking. This private suite/apartment style arrangement was built in response to prevailing trends in the private sector. However, the architectural arrangement of such a style inhibits the formation of a strong community.

During construction, nine graves were discovered that are believed to belong to enslaved African Americans.