- GISB is a "connector and a crossroads of campus" It literally connects the arts district of campus to the main Library which is a major center of student life.
- The building is designed around total sustainable design principles and is LEED Gold certified.
- The building has two wings: one to the east reinforcing the orthogonal grid of the surrounding campus and one to the west generated by the curvilinear geometry of the Arboretum and former stadium, where the Little 500 began.
- The two wings came about in order to maximize the number of offices with exterior views and interior light.
- The "connector or atrium" space between the two wings is the crossroads of the building and serves as a unique location and space for celebrations and special events.
- "Community/Collaboration": Create a sense that everyone shares the major public spaces and interacts with other groups in the building.
- "Share the light": Allow the exterior light to extend in and through the building to provide natural light and views for all building occupants.
- "Open up corridor ends": Have common functions in the form of lounges and conference rooms at the ends of corridors with direct views of the outside.
- "Break up the mass of the building": Break up space both on the interior and exterior by periodically having collaboration/conference rooms between rows of faculty offices. This is expressed on the exterior by "feature bays," a different architectural treatment of those spaces.
- "Learn inside and outside the building": Create not just classrooms but learning spaces, places, corridors, plazas and gardens for informational teaching and learning.
- "Bring the outside in and the inside out": Connect interior and exterior spaces both visually and physically. Bring exterior materials inside.