Experiencing Great Architecture and Creative Built Environments

Cook Law Quadrangle (1923-33)

York and Sawyer, Architects

The University of Michigan Law School

South University Avenue at State Street  Ann Arbor, MI

Aerial and Map View

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Photos taken November 4 and 5, 2011

The Cook Law Quad is one of those special places where you just feel good being there. Walking through any one of the 3 arched portals from South University Avenue, you are tranformed as you enter a beautiful space enclosed by a collection of exquisitely detailed Gothic Revivial buildings. The great lawn is crisscrossed by walkways, and has grand old trees scattered about in just the right amount to provide shade in some places and sun in other places for students to relax, talk with friends and maybe even study. The scale of the dormortories to the north and east, the dining hall to the west, and the gothic tracery windows of the Library Reading Room to the south provides a varied and timeless backdrop in all directions. I recommend entering from South University Avenue through the portal closest to State Street, next to the Lawer’s Club. The archway tunnel turns into a cloister with an arched colonnade revealing the secluded lawn beyond. Architecture is a 3-dimensional artform, only truly appreciated by progressing through the spaces and experiencing the sequence of views carefully revealed by the architecture. The UofM Law School is a textbook example.

Link to History Web Page

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