Olsson Roof Patio


Olsson Roof Patio

Sinclair Hille Architects was selected to design a small rooftop pavilion for Olsson’s Lincoln Nebraska headquarters.  The existing roof patio on the 3rd level of the building had been completed as part of the original design but lacked covering or any enclosed space cool enough in the summer months for gatherings and other social events.

There were several challenges involved.  Providing shade for people to enjoy the outdoors was one of the primary motivators for the project, so the sun’s path in the sky had to be studied and mapped to identify where covering(s) would be the most effective.  It was also required that some of the seating be protected from both the sun and the rain, which suggested exploring deeper overhangs along the edges of the pavilion.  Lastly, the rooftop patio had a less-than desirable view in one direction and it would be the job of the new pavilion to screen that view, and buffer some of the neighboring traffic noise.

The completed addition is remarkable.  The new interior social space includes seating for about 30 people, a large multi-purpose kitchen, and is connected with all the technology needed to host all kinds of groups – whether a business meeting or a social gathering.  The pavilion is made durable and cleanable with glass, concrete and all-season furnishings throughout, but is also warmed by the natural beauty of wood on the walls and in the ceiling.

The design balances the obligations into a simple, attractive, and highly functional addition that goes beyond the stated needs for the project, adds real value to the existing building and enhances everyone’s experience with the outdoors. 


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The Concordia University Team has always worked through the design process with Sinclair Hille’s leadership and come away feeling like our project priorities were understood. Setting overall project goals in the initial design meeting with Sinclair Hille has proven to be a key to our success.

Dave Kumm

CFO, Concordia University