The University at Buffalo School of Law and virtually all of its operations are located in O'Brian Hall, a 7-story building of 205,534 square feet.
O'Brian Hall is located within a physically interconnected group of academic buildings on the North Campus known as "the spine" because its row of buildings connected by elevated corridors (at the second floor level) gives the appearance, to some, of a series of vertebrae. The physical connection of O'Brian Hall to numerous buildings containing core academic departments has served the Law school well, and its importance to supporting the academic mission of the University and the Law school should not be underestimated in a physical climate that is unfriendly to outdoor movement for many months of the year.
The University at Buffalo and School of Law has made over $3 million in improvements to our facility over the last four years. O'Brian Hall is a compact, vertically-oriented building.
The first floor is given over to an entry lobby, numerous large lecture halls, a student lounge, and the Letro Courtroom, a working courtroom used occasionally by sitting courts and judges for conducting actual judicial business, and frequently by faculty and students for classes, moot courts, and other extracurricular activities.
Above the first floor, the building consists of a massive, vertical, central core that houses the Charles B. Sears Law Library. Around the core on each upper floor, arrayed in the shape of an "L," are offices housing all other law school operations, including administrative offices, faculty offices, student organization offices, the Baldy Center, and a small number of classrooms.
Classroom Spaces: O'Brian Hall contains classroom space on the first and second floors, in the basement, on the fourth and seventh floors, and on the fifth floor in the Law Library interior. Classrooms used exclusively for Law school instruction have the following seating capacities, respectively: 30, 12, 30, 40, 80, 80, 159, 72, 89, 18, 18, 12 and 20. This yields a total of 660 seats available in the building at any one time. Other spaces in the building are occasionally used for classes include: the Letro Courtroom on the first floor, the Baldy Conference Center and Seminar Room on the fifth floor, the Koren Audiovisual Center on the fifth floor of the Law Library, and faculty offices, which by design are large enough to permit instruction of small seminars and independent studies.
Clinic Spaces: The Clinical Legal Education Program is housed primarily in the Clinic suite, consisting of five rooms on the fifth floor of the law school: a large central office and reception area housing one secretary/receptionist, her work station with computer and phone, a second work station, central networked printer for all Clinic personnel, photocopy machine and Clinic faculty mailboxes; two smaller rooms, each housing a secretary and her work station; a large student work room equipped with several desks, tables, telephones and file cabinets; and a conference room used for Clinic class meetings, student-teacher conferences, and client consultations.
Each of ten full-time supervising attorneys – professors, clinical professors and clinical instructors – has a private office. The Clinic's central office and clinical faculty offices are fully equipped with individual, networked personal computers for each secretary and faculty member, supported by the law school technology staff. Clinic faculty, students, and staff enjoy access to the full array of facilities available to others in the Law school, including printing and high-speed copying services, fax machines, a postage meter, classrooms, library, computer labs, and student lounge and dining areas.
Student Spaces: Student organizations share numerous offices throughout the building. The Buffalo Law Review has its own suite of offices. Several co-curricular activities, including trial teams and moot courts share a large, recently renovated space in the Law school's "Skills Center." Additionally, the other law journals are housed together in their designated space.