December 4th, 2013 |
all news, master planning
The cover story in the latest Harvard Magazine is about landscape architect Michael Van Valkenburgh. At a presentation about 16 years ago I remember him referring to Beck’s Odelay, which I thought was pretty hip. The article states:
A professor and designer he is — the Eliot professor in practice of landscape architecture at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design (GSD), and probably the most celebrated landscape architect in America.
Van Valkenburgh’s firm was selected with architects Beyer Blinder Belle to conduct Dartmouth’s master planning process.
In the new plan, “a significant amount of new building is proposed for existing parking lots,” according to BFJ Planning, another firm involved.
December 2nd, 2013 |
all news, cabins, Mt. Moosilauke, preservation, Ravine Lodge
Back in 2008 this site noted with suspicion the talk of the possible demolition and replacement of the Ravine Lodge.
A reading the 2010 edition of the Moosilauke Land Management Plan (pdf) is reassuring, however. While concerned, the folks in charge seem to be the last ones who would want to get rid of the building. From page 24 of the plan:
In 2005, the Moosilauke Advisory Committee and Outdoor Programs began discussing the replacement of the Ravine Lodge, because of maintenance issues and because the building was felt to be not sufficient for existing needs. In the fall of 2008, the College administration decided that, for the foreseeable future (at least five years) it does not envision reconstruction of the Ravine Lodge. The existing main building will be maintained as it long as it can safely be done, and rotten logs will be replaced, as part of the College operating budget through the Facilities Operations & Maintenance department (FO&M).
However, concerns about sufficiency of facilities continue.
That paragraph concludes with a warning of “the significant possibility of replacement of the Lodge in the not-too-distant future.”
When a dinner crowd can no longer be seated safely, or when a weakened log can only be replaced at great expense, how should the replacement Ravine Lodge look?
The recent Moosilauke practice has been to build excellent buildings with timber frames, but one could argue that the Ravine Lodge simply must be a log cabin. Does New Hampshire still have forests that can supply big logs economically? I have no idea. Could a sustainable harvest in the Grant provide the right timber? This could be the perfect time to play out Gregory Bateson’s “New College roof beam” story.
The Ravine Lodge is famous for its collection of cast-off trail signs and other jetsam, and all of this would go to the replacement. Some of the original logs would be incorporated as well. Maybe the new lodge could have a foundation of granite instead of concrete. And the upgrades would be irresistable: it could have a high-capacity septic system, dedicated Croo quarters, a modern kitchen, an accessible elevator, and all the infrastructure the current lodge lacks. Maybe its dining room would be able to seat 125 instead of 85.
If fire safety is the main concern, could the old lodge be saved if its program were reduced drastically? Build the grand new lodge next door and turn the old lodge into a spacious but relatively little-used visitor center, bunkhouse, or storage building.
November 30th, 2013 |
all news, preservation, Rollins Chapel
This superb Doric temple is one of my favorite Richmond buildings:
Built in 1841 as the First Baptist Church, it was designed by Thomas U. Walter, who would go on to design the dome of the U.S. Capitol (Wikipedia).
The church is now a student center for the Medical College of Virginia. The rear facade, which faces the school, has a nice addition with a new main entrance that allows the front to remain untouched:
Images from Google Street View.
Medical students looking for a place to worship share the hospital’s chapel, built in 1981 as a nondenominational space: “Rounded walls, adaptable seating and a lack of religious icons offer a place for the whole community,” according to a 2010 news brief.
November 28th, 2013 |
all news, DHMC, Heat Plant, Lamb & Rich, other projects, preservation, publications, the Hop
The design of the Black VAC landscape, including the Arts Plaza, was by Richard Burck Associates, the Boston-area firm that designed Berry Row. The project manager was Lisa Giersbach.
An article on the Williamson Translational Research Building in Dartmouth Medicine (Spring 2013) includes this exchange with Geisel School Senior Associate Dean for Research Duane Compton:
DM: Plans for a translational research building began several years ago. What makes this the right time to move forward with this project?
COMPTON: In 2007, Dr. Peter Williamson and his wife, Susan, made a landmark gift commitment to support the construction of a translational research building for the medical school. A year later, the economy collapsed and nearly all Dartmouth College building plans were put on hold, including the Williamson Building. Now, with the stronger economy, fundraising momentum growing, and the need for additional research space intensifying, it’s imperative that we move forward with the building.
Is Fairchild getting a deck? The floorplan provided as part of the Fairchild renovation project page shows what appears to be a plank-floored deck with tables on the College Street side of the building.
Google Street View of Fairchild.
Dartmouth Engineer Magazine (March 2013) has an article on the Advanced Surgery Center at DHMC, an extension of an existing wing of the complex.
This site keeps harping on the need to preserve and reuse the Heating Plant. For an elegant reuse of a powerplant as a college library, see Moore Ruble Yudell’s U.W. Tacoma project. An 1875 waterworks building in Bonn, Germany was renovated in 1986 to serve as the Plenary Chamber of the Bundestag (photo gallery). And on a different scale, G.G. Scott’s 1947 and 1963 Bankside Power Station was rehabbed in 2000 by Herzog & de Meuron as the Tate Modern (Wikipedia; Louise Bourgeois, sculptor of Crouching Spider, was the first artist to have work commissioned for the Turbine Hall). Dartmouth’s smokestack, although only about a half-century old, must be retained as part of the complex, especially in an environment of few spires. Yale’s master plan devotes one map to locating “major vertical objects” on the campus (pdf, page 94).
I didn’t know that Tuck is offering a dual-degree program (Master of Environmental Law and Policy/Master of Business Administration) with Vermont Law School (VLS pdf).
Congratulations to the football team on an excellent conclusion to the season in the Princeton game (see this photo of the snowy evening in The Woods). The coverage on WDCR on line was enjoyable. For some reason, however, DartmouthSports.com still depends on Flash for much of its free live content. A hint: Adobe announced that it would stop developing mobile Flash more than two years ago, and Flash has never worked on iOS devices.
Boora’s design for the Hop renovation, according to the website, will include “a series of transparent boxes that penetrate the opaque modern exterior at entry points.” The article in The Dartmouth also mentions eliminating confusion in navigation “by changing the entryway structures.” Could these additions include a new street-level front entry pavilion located between the Inn and the Moore Theater (the iconic Hop facade)? This remarkable photo from Aerial Design shows the site, with the recent Grand Ballroom box and its depressed entrance to the Hop visible behind the reduced Zahm Garden.
Aerial Design has a number of excellent photos taken after a snowfall during December of 2012. The streets are uniformly free of snow and look almost like chilly canals in some of the images: the VAC, the Hop, and downtown; the south end of the Green and town; east along Lebanon Street to Memorial Field; and eastward across the campus from Tuck Mall.
Did you know that the New Hampshire legislature gave degree-granting authority to a for-profit university with its main administrative office in Concord and its campus in a 16th-century castle near Turin? St. John International University is having problems according to Inside Higher Ed.
November 26th, 2013 |
all news, Country Club, History, preservation
High school jumping is big in New Hampshire, and it sounds like it’s even bigger among the kids in Park City, Utah, where the Salt Lake Olympic facilities are located.
Although jumping was the centerpiece of Winter Carnival (see the special jumping poster for 1977 Carnival at Dartmouth Images), and Dartmouth fought hard against the end of collegiate jumping in 1980, the jump on the Golf Course was dismantled in 1993.
Warren Chivers at the 1938 Winter Carnival
Dartmouth is already years too late to have any effect on women’s jumping, a sport that will debut at this winter’s Olympics. A recent New York Times Magazine story suggests that the U.S. women’s team might be the best in the world. And collegiate jumpers started holding competitions again in 2011 (Boston Globe story, Times story).
For the last 20 years, Dartmouth has ignored a winter sport — a Nordic skiing discipline — that it once pioneered. Now the sport is coming back in this country. Other colleges seem to be able to handle the cost of insurance. Isn’t it time Dartmouth got back into the competition?
November 19th, 2013 |
all news, Charter, Country Club, graphic design, Hanover Inn, Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., History, master planning, other projects, preservation, site updates, the Hop | 1 Comment
An update of the “North Block” golf course development idea: Take a look at the Perkins + Will plan for the Poplar Point Development In Washington, D.C. Naturally Dartmouth wouldn’t need this density or scale, but it could learn from the extension of the existing street grid to form irregular quadrangular blocks; the treatment of the edge condition (the Anacostia River); and the accommodation of streams flowing through the site.
An update of the Hop expansion post: Of course! The new theater and entrance facade represent the final realization of Larson’s old 1940s Hop designs. In this post, a still image from a college video shows how Larson wanted to put a theater and a major entrance to the Hopkins Center on what was then College Street. And the Dartmouth has an article on the Boora project.
I did not learn until recently that this memorable window, visible on the way to Hanover from West Leb, is called a “Vermont window” or a “witch window” (Wikipedia):
Dartmouth has been phasing out the “@alum.dartmouth.org” accounts and assigning everyone, past and present, an “@dartmouth.edu” address (only the address, not an account). This is neater than the old dual system where students had one address/account and alumni another. When the “@alum.dartmouth.org” accounts came in (during 1995 or 1996?) they seemed like an awkward solution. The rationale for creating the new domain was that Dartmouth was barred (by its interpretation of the government’s pre-ICANN rules, one supposes) from using the “.edu” domain for accounts assigned to anyone but employees and students. Yet Harvard came out with its “@post.harvard.edu” domain around that time, so it is hard to see that as the reason.
Although it was fun to use Blitzmail after college, the need for a personal, ISP-independent email account was soon satisfied more effectively on the Web by Hotmail (1996) and Yahoo Mail (1997). Students responded with WebBlitz (1998 or 1999?) but I don’t recall that it prevented the alumni accounts from slipping into some obscurity. The susceptibility of the alumni accounts to great volumes of spam did not help.
The Rauner Blog has a post on Sgt. Allen Scott Norton of WWI with photos of the trenches dug on the future site of Leverone Field House or Red Rolfe Field.
The Planner’s Blog has a post on a new war memorials map.
Finally a photo of new Hop entrance below the grand ballroom — and the ever-shrinking Zahm Courtyard. It is included in the war memorial map.
The College Steward was a charter office first held by Ebenezer Brewster, who established the tavern that preceded the Inn. I’ve wondered if the office could be revived, and whom it should be given to. Contemporary college statutes from England (Downing College Cambridge, published in 1800, in Google Books) suggest that a steward was the head of dining services:STATUTE XI.
OF THE STEWARD.
THERE shall also be one Steward appointed annually by the Master, from among the Professors and Fellows, to direct every thing which relates to the Commons and Sizings to be served in the hall at dinner and supper, and the wine and other articles provided in the combination room. He shall make all payments in respect of such Commons and Sizings to the Cook and Butler of the College, at such times as shall be appointed by the Master, and shall receive the same from the Tutor, within one week of the end of every Term, for all his Pupils who have been in Commons during the Term; and for all other persons in Commons, he shall be paid by themselves in the same time.
The Grad Studies Office has a photo of the professionally-made sign in its renovated 37 Dewey Field Road. (In the recent interior renovation, references to 37 Dewey Field Road seem to encompass both 37 and 50 Dewey Field Road, the old Homes 37 and 50.)
Insignia: From a College Grant photo album (pdf), page 20, we learn that
The “Diamond D” log brand was stamped with a hammer into all logs leaving the College Grant so they could be identified upon reaching the sawmill.
Unrelated: The clever Europhilia of Football as Football. And it is funny how the Maryland governor’s “Goals” website logo recalls the RAF roundel:
Dartmouth Now has an article on the up-close inspection of the exterior of Baker Tower.
Congratulations to The Dartmouth on its new website. Here’s hoping the upgrade doesn’t involve a new URL for every past article. This site has more than 220 broken links to the D at the moment.
November 17th, 2013 |
all news, cabins, master planning, Mt. Moosilauke, Organic Farm, other projects, Ravine Lodge
William Maclay Architects, creators of the master plan for the Organic Farm, have designed the Class of 1974 Bunkhouse at the Ravine Lodge. Timberhomes LLC is building the bunkhouse. The class will present it at their 40-year reunion next year. The construction site is visible north of the Lodge in this recent Google aerial:
The Ravine Lodge really seems to be evolving into a little village, less a singular outpost than a summer camp.
November 13th, 2013 |
all news, master planning
The firm of Beyer Blinder Belle, the first new master planner for Dartmouth in a couple of decades, has added a page to its website announcing its Dartmouth plan. Of the four images on the page, only one shows a design. It is an aerial perspective view of a computer model of the campus, and it is meant to show the landscape plan rather than any proposed buildings per se. The official master plan website has not been updated yet.
Detail of Tuck/Thayer area from Beyer Blinder Belle master plan image.
The image, although not a complete plan by any means, shows several notable proposals for new construction:
- There is a big new set of dorms behind Mass Row. This seems inevitable given the site, but one hopes that South Fairbanks, at least, could be preserved somewhere.
- Three or more new dorms are shown continuing the line of Fahey-McLane along the slopes of Tuck Drive.
It is not clear whether the President’s House is replaced or incorporated into this group. One supposes that any dorm proposed for the end of Webster Avenue will be reached by a footpath leading from Tuck Mall, so it makes sense to shift it away from the Avenue and closer to the Mall.
- This is intriguing: The top end of Tuck Drive is shown dead-ending before Fahey/McLane. That would improve Tuck Mall and reduce traffic on the Drive, but it would also eliminate the Drive’s original and historic function as an auto road.
- There are big changes at the pro schools: the remaining River Cluster dorms are replaced, of course, and the Maxwell-Channing Cox Apartments are also demolished to make way for something completely different. The Thayer School parking lot is finally given over to its logical purpose of supporting academic buildings. Aha: Thayer Drive, which brings traffic up the hill from Wheelock Street, is routed all the way to the west end of the plateau before it skirts the River Cluster area and reaches Whittemore Circle. Bleh: suburban. One hopes that this scheme is meant to be a shorthand for “more development” rather than a concrete proposal. Again, this landscape snapshot cannot be taken as an explanation of the final version of the overall master plan.
- An extension is added to South Fayer or Bartlett, or maybe both. This is an excellent idea that prior plans have floated.
- A big new athletic building, probably, is shown on the tennis courts across from the Sphinx. It connects to or replaces (one hopes not) Davis Varsity House.
- A boxy front extension of Wheeler Hall is shown protruding into the quadrangle there. Hmmm. It is hard to tell whether the quad on the other side of Wheeler is filled with new construction or is omitted from this landscape plan.
- On Berry Row, a new building replaces Raven House, and a new building is shown between Kemeny and Moore. Good. But that latter building extends westward to Main Street, eliminating the NAD House, Phi Tau, and Alpha Theta. Not so good.
- The area north of Maynard is inscribed with the curving Romantic paths of Berry Row instead of the efficient rectilinear paths of the Green or Tuck Mall. But it is nice to see a green armature woven through the blocks from Berry all the way up to the LSC. New buildings are shown opposite Moore Hall and at the NCAC site along College Street, as expected. There’s another one shown near the center of the block, expanding upon or replacing Kellogg Auditorium. This makes sense, and people will be relieved to see the Med School keeping its campus from spilling behind Vail or beyond the LSC.
- The Choates are replaced with a linear double-ranked row of buildings. The landscape here will tie Berry Row to the Roth Center, making this spoke/tendril appear to be a small-scale counterpart to Tuck Mall.
- Sargent Block: The plan suggests that the Sargent Block master plan be carried out in some fashion. Notably, no building is shown on the FO&M/Shops corner.
- Rich created a precedent when he put mirror-image row of buildings behind Dartmouth Row, probably based on a plan by Charles Eliot. VSBA identified the double row of buildings as a distinctive type and a useful form. MRY used it in the McLaughlin dorms. Here, BBB plans several double rows: Behind Mass Row, where the form has been anticipated, as noted above; in the Choates, where both rows would be created at the same time; and behind Dick’s House, where such a row would provide valuable organization in a long-unplanned space.
- Some other buildings not mentioned above: A dining hall/student center stands on the street to form a southern end to Mass Row, connecting Thayer, Robinson, and Collis. This is an old Larson idea, a good idea if the building is porous enough to allow pedestrians to reach Psi Upsilon and Wheelock Street; a rear extension for the Murdough Center; and a replacement for North Hall and the Choate House. Choate House is an 18c house that has already been moved twice and really must be saved somewhere.
- It is interesting what this landscape plan leaves out — the areas around the buildings on East Wheelock and Park Street, the athletic facilities of Chase Fields, College Park and most of the science buildings, La Casa and its neighbors, and the McLaughlin Cluster. It is not clear whether this means “no change” or “not important” or just “not part of the main circulation system.”
Overall, the image suggests that the plan will be notable for its restraint. It does not set out to expand the borders of the campus.
[Update 11.15.2013: President's House item altered, items after Sargent Block added.]
November 11th, 2013 |
4 Currier, Academic Center, all news, CHCDS, DHMC, History, master planning, Med. School, north campus, other projects, publications
- Hello, what’s this? The newest Google aerial shows hundreds of chairs and the big Commencement stage set up on the Green. It looks as if the photo was taken just before the Convocation on September 20. It is definitely recent: the Wilson Hall elm is missing, the Crouching Spider is visible, the new scoreboard is casting a shadow on the south end of Memorial Field, the Williamson is under way, Alpha Phi is in place, and the clearing has started for Kappa Delta at the end of Webster Avenue.
- The Planner’s Blog has a couple of photos of the start of the Triangle House renovation. The Trumbull-Nelson magazine has an article on the construction of Alpha Phi and a photo of the Kappa Delta foundation going in.
- Remember the big six-level parking garage in Dewey Field?
Built in 1972 to hold 490 cars, the garage is visible in this 1995 photo behind Remsen/Vail. The college demolished it in 1996. A Bing aerial shows the current state of the site at the northwest corner of the Dewey Field parking lot, and a Google Street View shows the site from the ground (pan around to see the Google engineers giving the camera trike a sendoff).
- It turns out that ADD, Inc., the firm that designed the interior renovations of Home 36 and Home 50, did more than create a new headquarters there for Dana Library. It also created offices there for DCHCDS; and it designed interiors at 4 Currier Place.
- Some notes on education: A small article in Education Life in the Times covers an interesting project, the Minerva Schools. In this attempt to be a non-discount university at a discount price, the idea of renting space in a series of world cities is a neat one. (Also in the supplement is a wordy ad for MALS at Dartmouth (pdf) that seems undesigned — showing directness and honesty, one supposes.) A visit to a Virginia horse fair last weekend turned up booths representing the University of Findlay in Ohio and Centenary College in New Jersey. Interesting. Most of the other booths promoted saddles, animal feed, or pasture fencing.
November 9th, 2013 |
all news, graphic design, History, other projects
Dartmouth College, the undergraduate college, has almost always maintained one or more “Associated Institutions” or “Associated Schools” alongside it:
- Geisel School of Medicine, 1797-
- Chandler School of Science and the, Arts 1851-1892
- New Hampshire College of Agriculture and the Mechanic Arts, 1866-1892
- Thayer School of Engineering, 1867-
- Tuck School of Business Administration, 1900-
Thus the college has not added a new school in more than a century. Although a college department granted its first graduate degree in 1885, and the college began turning out significant numbers of doctoral degrees during the 1960s, the college has not created a separate graduate school of arts and sciences. The institution known as Graduate Studies has only recently begun to assert its own identity.
Now President Hanlon has proposed to elevate Graduate Studies to the stature of an Associated School. The Dartmouth reports on his speech at Monday’s faculty meeting:
As part of his goal to increase Dartmouth’s global impact, Hanlon proposed the creation of a freestanding graduate school, whose dean would report directly to the College Provost instead of to the Dean of the Faculty, as is current practice. This endeavor would mainly involve changes to the existing graduate school structure. Dartmouth’s graduate studies programs are tied to the undergraduate departments, but the College might see changes to this model in the near future.
The Valley News describes the idea similarly.
While the new school would not necessarily require any more space, it would find itself in a better position to lobby for a building of its own in the future. It claims more than 1,200 students (Graduate Studies Facts), which makes it larger than Tuck and Thayer combined.
Where could a new building be located? Several of the most likely sites lie at the north end of the Berry Row axis, close to the flexible buildings of Rope Ferry Road and not too far from the graduate student housing of North Park Street. Another, more limited site is located at the end of Webster Avenue: the President’s House could be extended westward and the school installed there, with a pedestrian bridge over Tuck Drive to join it to Tuck School.
November 7th, 2013 |
all news, Hood, master planning, preservation, the Hop
Boora Architects has released some of its designs for the expansion of the Hopkins Center.
The first image is a view of the area now occupied by the café and lawn seen in this Google Street View image:
The hill appears to have been carved away and a new glass-walled entrance inserted at the basement level. The blank-walled righthand portion of this three-level infill addition presumably contains the new theater. A balcony projects from each of the upper levels. This might be a sort of Bass Concert Hall facade.
The second image shows the main corridor, presumably at ground level. This seems to be a view to north: the box office and Moore Theatre scene shop have been blasted through, and we can see straight into the existing Darling Courtyard, the unroofed sculpture atrium behind the Warner Bentley bust. The coffering in the ceiling (or in the underside of the floor of the level above) refers to the oval coffering of the original building; in the center a cutout reveals yet another level above. Something interesting must be happening around the current Spaulding lobby if the new stair is to fit. The existing studio range is not necessarily removed, although it is hard to tell.
This part of the Hop currently stands only one level above ground, of course. In this Bing aerial, the corridor is the flat-roofed, black-surfaced element, while the café is the curving Hood-era addition below it.
The fourth image shows the interior of the new theater, presumably looking to the northwest. Off to the left is visible the main corridor with its green seat.
The fifth image appears to show the expanded Darling Courtyard. It looks like the floor has been dropped into Paddock in the basement and a glass roof placed overhead.
The third image depicts Alumni Hall as transformed into a concert chamber. Presumably the vaults will need to be closed up for acoustic purposes (see Jonathan Owens’s study). The existing wooden plaques seem likely to be moved, since they would be obscured by the proposed wall paneling and raked seating.
[Update 11.21.2013: Last sentence, about Alumni Hall windows, removed. The rendering looks west, not east.]
November 5th, 2013 |
Academic Center, all news, DHMC, Gilman, Life Sciences Ctr., master planning, preservation
The Dartmouth reports again, this time with conviction, that the NCAC project as we know it is stalled. It seems as if it might have been effectively cancelled.
Bertaux + Iwerks Architects present an interesting might-have-been, a pre-NCAC design for a new central DMS building. The design would have given DMS a new signature structure and knitted together the existing campus by connecting Vail to Dana and the Life Sciences Center.
It is hard to tell whether this design would have been any more successful as a work of urbanism than the NCAC design, for all its faults. Then again, the NCAC had more space to play with, enjoying the removal of both Dana and Gilman.
October 30th, 2013 |
all news, Band, DHMC, History, Larson, Jens, master planning, Memorial Field, Mt. Moosilauke, publications, Triangle House
- The Dartmouth reports that work has begun on the extensive renovation of the apartment house at 4 North Park Street, to be known as Triangle House.
- College Photographer Eli Burakian has posted some superb aerials of Baker and the Green. The latter image shows downtown Hanover and in the distance the hospital, the smokestack of each communicating with the other as if these were The Only Two Places in the World. See also the Mt. Moosilauke panorama.
- Stantec notes that it worked on Dartmouth’s master plan. One assumes that this was a prior plan, but since the site also lists the recent Dartmouth Row programming study, it’s not clear.
- Bertaux + Iwerks Architects has info on the 2005 SBRA master plan for DHMC.
- A new film on the Densmore Brick Company was shown at AVA Gallery; see also the Valley News story and this depressing Bing aerial. From AVA Gallery:
Lebanon’s Densmore Brick Factory, which closed in 1976 after 170 years of production, made the bricks that contributed to the built environment of the Upper Valley, including much of Dartmouth College.
- The field-side view of Davis Varsity House is improved by the removal of the scoreboard, Bruce Wood points out (Big Green Alert blog).
- The Rauner blog has an interesting post on the correspondence between Samson Occom and Phillis Wheatley (Wikipedia).
- The Band’s new uniforms look good (see Flickr photo). They are more “Ivy” and expensive-looking than the previous plain green blazers over white pants. Black seems to be replacing white as the accent color accompanying Dartmouth Green these days.
- A July article in the New York Times told of Yale’s efforts to protect its name against a “Yale Academy.” As an aside, I found Yale’s recent presidential inauguration inspiring. After the ceremony the band, wearing academic gowns, led the procession up Hillhouse Avenue, where the president passed beneath a balloon arch and halted in the middle of the street between two lines of student singers. The music stopped and everyone sang Bright College Years. Fantastic. The day before, a dean carrying a yale’s head (Wikipedia) on a staff had led a dog parade around Cross Campus (New Haven Register).
- Better than having a hockey game at Fenway Park, Virginia Tech and Tennessee will play a football game at the Bristol Motor Speedway, a Nascar track (Richmond Times Dispatch).
October 28th, 2013 |
all news, master planning, Thayer Dining Hall, Thayer School
The cemetery is an obstacle to cross-campus foot traffic and contributes to the perception that the business and engineering schools, not to mention the River Cluster dormitories, are distant and isolated.
To get from the Green to the River Cluster, one has to walk north to Tuck Mall and then west, following the red line on the map below. West Wheelock Street looks a little shorter on a map, but most people do not walk that way because the elevation changes so much. The traffic along West Wheelock also makes the walk not particularly pleasant.
During the 1920s, college architect Jens Larson proposed to solve this problem by building a suspension (?) bridge for pedestrians right over the cemetery. The blue line above shows the approximate route. The cemetery contains several ravines, so this bridge would have flown through the treetops. It might have been like the Sky Walk in Monteverde Preserve in Costa Rica, a bridge system that has been in magazine ads lately.
Larson’s bridge was never built. It would have been an expensive way to provide mere convenience and seems unlikely to have been received well by the cemetery authorities.
But what about skirting the cemetery’s southern boundary with a bridge or causeway built on land acquired by the college? The green line on the map above shows this route.
In the image above, based on a Bing aerial, the roofs of Thayer Dining Hall/53 Commons are visible in the foreground. A view of the site from the west shows how the viaduct would create a circulation network; see also a view of the site from the south.
A Street View partway up Thayer Drive, the road that leads through the trees from Wheelock Street to Thayer School, shows just some of the elevation change that one would avoid by using the viaduct. See also a view from the east.
A viaduct here could take the form of a Larson-style brick arcade, like the one that connects Streeter to each of its neighbors in the Gold Coast, or the front facade of Memorial Field’s grandstand. This would be expensive. A stone arcade would be even more expensive. The viaduct could be a timber-framed College-Grant style suspension bridge, interesting but perhaps ephemeral. An enclosed airport terminal bridge like at Thayer (Street View) would be expensive and unnecessary. The most interesting form might be that of a very “engineered” steel bridge that recalls the Ski Jump tower. The cheapest and sturdiest form might be a basic utilitarian concrete bridge like that of the rear of the Fairchild Center (Street View) or the side of the Boss Tennis Center.
Those apartments along Wheelock Street are not all necessarily owned by the college, but they should be, and one guesses that eventually they will be.
This area probably should be left in apartments no matter who owns the land. Dartmouth could do a South Block project here, selectively improving or replacing buildings and potentially integrating the buildings with the viaduct. The spaces under the walkway could be inhabited or at least occupied, as in Viaduc des Arts in Paris.
By making the buildings rather tall and connecting their upper levels to the bridge, the college could even produce something like the 19-arch South Bridge in Edinburgh of 1788 (Wikipedia, historic-uk.com). A person standing on top of that high-level street in Edinburgh faces what appears to be the ground level of a modest building; in fact, he is at the fourth or fifth floor, with the lowest level of the building resting on the bottom of a valley (Bing aerial).
In Hanover, some of the buildings on the Wheelock Street side of the bridge would be five or six stories high — towers, really:
[Update 11.03.2013: The town is having Plan NH run a West Wheelock Street design charrette next weekend:
The Hanover Affordable Housing Commission and Hanover Planning Board recognize underutilized residential land area close to the downtown, a prominent gateway to our Main Street commercial district and the Dartmouth College campus, challenging topography, and the need to accommodate high traffic volumes with pedestrian safety.
(Via the Planner's Blog.)]
October 9th, 2013 |
all news, graphic design, History, other projects, publications, Quartomillennium '19
If you’re working on the branding effort (see the previous post on the topic
), I would recommend a visit to the archives to see some things:
- The green ribbon and its story. The college is represented by a single color.
- Typical accent colors are black, lavender, and white. White is used frequently in athletics. No big green-and-gold tradition seems to exist.
- The seal and its history. More effort could be devoted to reserving the seal for official uses only.
- The midcentury shield now in use, and the recent proposal for an heraldic coat of arms.
- The Bicentennial medal designed by Rudolph Ruzicka.
- Anything designed by John Scotford.
- Anything produced by the Stinehour Press (photo of exhibit, Valley News story) or Ray Nash, of the Graphic Arts Workshop (Rauner bio); also books published by the Dartmouth College Press.
- Copies of the ORC from various periods.
- Copies of The Dartmouth from various periods, especially before WWII.
- Carnival posters, especially those produced before 1959.
- Things made of leather and wood: Daniel Webster’s water bucket and old ski boots, senior canes and snowshoes.
Around campus, you might take note of the white color of Dartmouth Hall and the finely-speckled gray/white of the granite used in the foundations of many buildings. (That granite is not likely to be local; for a local granite, see the pinkish stone of Rollins Chapel, a stone that has not been used very widely on campus.) The brick walls with their varied colors, from black to brown to red, are characteristic of the campus, although the style of brickwork was originally called “Harvard brick.” There are many useful greens, including the patina of the copper roofs, the paint used on building shutters, the color of the shaggy pines along the riverbank, and the sometimes-black color of the river itself. An example of lavender appears in the glass of the Baker Tower clock.
A list of style guides from Logo Design Love has some nice examples. Duke’s guide announces that the word “University” in the Duke wordmark is set in Interstate, the typeface developed for road signs by the Department of Transportation. Yale’s identity site is prepared by the Office of the University Printer rather than the PR office. Princeton’s guide (pdf) on page 21 explains the difference between the seal and the shield, and it goes so far as to deface the seal with the word “SAMPLE” since, as the text explains, the seal is not for the public — not even by way of example! (Unlike B.U.) Oxford’s logo page has great visual appeal and actually is fairly flexible in its rules. University College Oxford has a guide by Franks and Franks (portfolio example) that looks nice and builds a traditionalist logotype around an abbreviation and nickname (“Univ.”).
October 7th, 2013 |
4 Currier, all news, other projects
President Hanlon, on September 20 (from The Dartmouth):
I am proud to announce today we are creating an Innovation Center and New Venture Incubator, to provide vital resources to student entrepreneurs.
Whether they are interested in business start-ups or social ventures, this facility will give them a world-class entrepreneurial competency, delivered by faculty and staff from across the campus as well as Dartmouth alumni around the world.
The official announcement (from Dartmouth Now):
Four Currier Place, with C&A’s on the left.
The center will be located on the first floor of Dartmouth’s 4 Currier Place building, adjacent to campus and just south of the Arts District on Lebanon Street. Renovations are slated to begin next month and continue through 2013 toward an expected opening in early 2014.
October 5th, 2013 |
all news, graphic design, History, master planning, other projects, preservation, publications, Visual Arts Center
- The new mobile-centric campus map is available as a pdf document. It shows fine details like the trails in the College Park and the lanes on the running track.
- That nice brick house on Lebanon Street in the Sargent Block was built ca. 1840 by John Williams (Frank J. Barrett, Early Dartmouth College and Downtown Hanover (2008), in Google Books).
- The folks over at Hillflint, big fans of Take Ivy (NYT, Wikipedia), are using a line drawing of Dartmouth Hall in their logo.
- College master planners Beyer Blinder Belle have contracted with BFJ Planning to come up with a transportation plan (pdf).
- Hokie Stone, the locally-quarried building stone of the Virginia Tech campus, has been mentioned here before. Now the football team is wearing helmets that are completely covered by a graphic depicting a wall made of Hokie Stone (Richmond Times Dispatch).
- With the Digital Production Unit added to Preservation Services (Rauner Blog), the library has been scanning old photos and putting them on line. The amazing collection is searchable and will provide the subjects for many posts here in the future.
- American Architects has an email interview with Machado and Silvetti regarding the Black VAC. The photos, by Esto, are also available on their own.
- The Times had an interesting article on the Caracas practice of naming intersections rather than streets.
- Professor Jeff Sharlet and his students are producing an online journal called 40 Towns (Corin Hirsch, “Dartmouth Literary Journal 40 Towns Documents Upper Valley,” Seven Days (4 September 2013)). Lindsay Ellis’s story “Kings of the Counter” is about people at the Fort (a.k.a. Fort Harry’s, etc.).
- DSpace@MIT, an online collection of MIT research papers, has the late Frederick Stahl’s 1955 MIT architecture thesis, an interesting proposal for the Hopkins Center (pdf). Stahl graduated from Dartmouth in 1952 and died on July 26 (Globe obituary, Boston Architectural College obituary).
- Princeton has moved the Dinky Station again, reports the Buildings & Grounds Blog of the Chronicle. The Dinky Line is a short railroad branch that connects the campus in Princeton to the town of Princeton Junction.
- This railroad news is unrelated to the campus but stirs the heart: The Union Pacific is going to restore a Big Boy, Engine 4114, to running condition. Who thought one of these creatures would ever come back to life? Unbelievable.
October 5th, 2013 |
all news, Connecticut River, Ledyard Canoe Club, preservation
Maybe this is a cynical view, but the framing of the story in The Dartmouth, with its quote from the college spokesman about the inevitability of mold, suggests that people are thinking about demolishing the Ledyard Canoe Club’s historic clubhouse.
The Riverfront Master Plan (image) is a guide rather than a manifesto, but it shows the building as being replaced during the next 10 years.