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The objective of this project is to utilize the sun and its natural light to illuminate the inside of a non denominational chapel. The chapel is to be built on campus at Farmingdale State College.  

Campus, Sun, and Light Analysis

In order to design for a building on campus, we must analyze the existing patterns on campus. These include spatial uses, circulation, campus orientation, and sun paths. We studied existing buildings and their use of natural light to aid us in our design.

Campus & Sun




Light Boxes & Light Analysis

To better understand how to control light, we created light box models to test out different methods. After three trials, we decided curved surfaces were the most effective when controlling light. 

Box 1

Modeled after the Exeter Library. This method was not so effective, as light passed directly through.

Box 2

This method was more effective, but light was still able to pass through and reach the floor. 

Box 3

This method was the most effective. Curved surfaces prove to maneuver light in a way that flattened surfaces can't. 


Based on the contextual analysis, I selected a location that fit into the existing campus patterns.  The ellipse provides for a defined facade, is within proximity to other campus amenities, and allows for light to pass through from multiple angles. 


The placement of the building faces north, so that as the sun rises in the east and sets in the west, each chapel receives natural light throughout the day. Curved surfaces throughout the building ensure light is properly manipulated.

Exterior Views