The Massachusetts Institute of Technology's (MIT) Hayden Library in Cambridge, Massachusetts, is about to receive a significant interior renovation. To better carry out its mission as a rigorous research space at the center of campus, Boston-based firm Kennedy & Violich Architecture (KVA) has developed a design concept titled "Research Crossroads" that aims to renew and restore the library's multiple programs and produce the optimal environment for the internet age of research. “We asked KVA to create spaces that reflect the library of the future—participatory, creative, dynamic—while also preserving what makes Hayden such a popular study destination: quiet, restful space with beautiful views,” said Chris Bourg, director of the MIT Libraries, in a press release. “Their design will not only make the library more open and welcoming; it will invite community members to make connections between ideas, collections, and each other.” While the ground floor of the library was for decades only accessible during business hours, the renovation will transform the 10,000-square-foot space into a dynamic and flexible community space open 24 hours a day and will include a cafe, study rooms, and an event room for lectures and exhibitions. The ground floor will also receive two new double-height glass pavilion structures that will overlook the Lipschitz Courtyard on one side and the Charles River on the other. “This design puts research physically and figuratively at the center of the library,” said Bourg. “The research rooms will be visible as you enter, signaling that the library is an active and vibrant space where people are interacting with knowledge and each other.” The study spaces are designed to support a wide variety of learning and research styles to allow students to 'hack' the library's resources as they see fit. The second-floor reading room will be accessible from the first via a central staircase as well as a full-size elevator to improve the building's ADA compliance. Hayden Library was originally completed in 1951 by Voorhees, Walker, Foley & Smith and remains one of the finest examples of the post-World War II Art Moderne style in the state. While the interior will be transformed by the renovation, minimal work is being performed on the exterior. The library's northeast entrance will be refurbished while the north and south windows, as well as sections of the limestone facades, will be renovated to their original conditions. The renovation is currently in the construction phase and is anticipated to be completed in time for the start of the 2020 fall semester in September.
Posts tagged with "Research Buildings":
Boston is well known for both its thriving biotech industry and for its high concentration of universities, and now the city's two largest economic sectors are overlapping with several academic institutions shrewdly expanding their science departments. Northeastern University is one of several schools to hop on this bandwagon. The school just announced that it will build a 180,000-square-foot academic facility, called the Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Building (ISEB). Boston-based firm Payette won the commission to design the six-story building along with adjoining green spaces after participating in a six week design competition. The site of the building sits on the opposite side of Northeastern's main campus, severed by several rail lines. Payette has proposed constructing what they've dubbed "The Arc," a curved pedestrian bridge, that provides access between the new building and Huntington Avenue, which will also serve as a direct connection between Fenway and Roxbury. A number of landscaped paths and open "tributaries" will link the two separate neighborhoods. The ISEB will house four academic research departments: engineering, health sciences, basic sciences, and computer sciences. According to the firm, the "building massing has been organized in two main volumes; an east facing laboratory bar and a west facing office form wrapped around a central open atrium." The facility will be divided into offices, staff workstations, conference rooms, cafes, and laboratories dedicated to each academic research study. The building features a glazed curtain wall that will "be wrapped with an outer skin of fixed solar shading responding to the building orientation." This $225 million project is the first component of Northeastern's larger plan to create 600,000 square feet of space for academic research and to accommodate the university's plan to add 300 faculty positions.
Agribusiness titan Monsanto has pledged hundreds of millions of dollars in upgrades to its research facility outside St. Louis, and design details are starting to pop up. Cannon Design will plan, design and engineer a new 400,000 square foot center for life sciences research. The expansion will bring 675 new employees to Chesterfield, on the western fringe of the St. Louis metropolitan area. Those jobs will be mainly high-paying research positions, encouraging for suburban Chesterfield after tax revenue sagged following 2009 layoffs at Pfizer, another major tenant of the business complex. But, as NextSTL points out, some urbanists would rather see such development closer to the urban core—namely in the CORTEX bioscience district in the city’s Central West End neighborhood. CORTEX would turn an old telephone factory and other industrial buildings into a biotech business district along Duncan Avenue.