Holy Spirit Friary, Franciscan University of Steubenville, Steubenville, Ohio
The friars, in determining the program for their new home, requested that it be residential in character and in keeping with Franciscan building tradition dating from the 13th century. The site selected on the campus is just beyond the dormitory area and at the edge of a high bluff overlooking the Ohio River Valley. The scheme takes the traditional cloister form, albeit accessible to visitors on three sides. The cloistered spaces of the quadrangle, the friars' cells and recreation area, face the sky and valley, a view given to contemplative regeneration.
On the opposite side across the courtyard, the building looks toward the university campus, subject of the friars' daily work, and contains offices, meeting rooms, community room, and refectory - areas where visitors are often welcomed. Between these north and south wings, toward the dormitories and the rising sun, is the chapel and bell tower, the dominant elements of the complex. The simple chapel has two large stained glass windows; the Holy Spirt to the east and the Canticle of St. Francis to the west.
The west side of the complex provides rear and service entrances and three guest rooms facing a private garden. Construction materials match or complement the materials of the campus buildings. The courtyard, with its surrounding single loaded hallways, provides good natural light and outlook in a building which, of necessity, is composed largely of numerous small rooms and long corridors.