An addition to the Rowing Boathouse

The 2012 Milone & MacBroom riverfront master plan suggested sites for additional rowing facilities, and for a while the Web page for the Ledyard Canoe Clubhouse replacement has stated that construction on that project “will be coordinated with renovation to the Rowing project.” About a year ago, the Beyer Blinder Belle “Green to Blue” framework plan (a larger image) depicted an intriguing ell coming off the bashful landward facade of the rowing boathouse. It turns out that the college is renovating the Friends of Dartmouth Rowing Boathouse and building a training room addition to a design by ARC Architects of Cambridge, Ma.

This is the site of the addition:

The addition will feature a set of rowing tanks to replace those in Alumni Gym. In plan, the tanks are reminiscent of a Mississippi River “steamboat” casino, only nominally in the water. And one wonders whether there is any way to harness the energy from the erg machines.


Update 12.07.2017: Link to ARC Architects of Seattle replaced with link to ARC Architects of Cambridge.

Image of new Ledyard; selecting Ravine Lodge timbers

Co-Op Food Store in Centerra


11.28.2016 update: DEN project page link added.

Building projects budgeted for; other news

  • The Town budget includes funding for construction of walk/bike path along Lyme Road to the Reservoir Road roundabout. The paved path will be separated from the road by a tree lawn (The Dartmouth).

  • Tri-Kap appears finally to be tackling its Fuller Audit improvements, planning to erect an addition designed by Domus Custom Builders (Zoning Board minutes 22 January 2015 pdf).

  • Earlier this year, the Hood Quarterly reported that work on the museum’s addition and renovation would begin during the Spring of 2016.1”Anonymous $10 Million Gift Will Transform Teaching at the Hood Museum of Art,” Hood Museum of Art Quarterly (Winter 2015), 10, available at The college trustees met last week and approved a capital budget that includes $8.5 million “for completion of design and preconstruction activities for the Hood Museum of Art renewal and expansion project” (Dartmouth Now). The Hood project, by Tod Williams Billie Tsien, “is being coordinated with a Hopkins Center for the Arts planning study” by Boora Architects.

  • Also in the new capital budget (Dartmouth Now) are:

    – Funds for the planning and design of a restoration project for Baker Tower.

    – “$11.75 million for design and construction of facilities related to initial work on the configuration of new residential housing communities.” That is likely work by Sasaki Associates, with the funding presumably going to build something less than the total number of dining-hall additions, faculty houses, or other “neighborhood” improvements the firm is proposing.

    – “$100,000 for planning and conceptual design for the Ledyard Canoe Club replacement project.” The growth of mold in the clubhouse has sealed its fate; the designer of the replacement has not been named.

    – “$200,000 for schematic design for renovation of Moosilauke Ravine Lodge.” After Maclay Architects studied the feasibility of preserving or replacing the Lodge, it was not known which route the board would take. Maclay even sketched a design for a possible replacement. Now it seems that the Lodge is going to be preserved.

  • The Planner’s Blog mentions that there are more than 42 types of bollard on campus. Almost as impressive is the fact that all the bollards have been cataloged and are being evaluated in a critical way.

  • Dartmouth Now has a nice post on the Book Arts Workshop in Baker.2Hannah Silverstein, “Book Arts Workshop: Hands-On Learning, Global Reach,” Dartmouth Now (25 February 2015), at

  • The feasibility study for that future Mass Row renovation was conducted a couple of years ago by Lawson Bell Architects.

  • Miller Chevrolet Cadillac, down on Route 120 not far from Fort Harry’s, has been sold, and its site is to be redeveloped:

    Although Cicotte declined to identify the buyer, she said it wasn’t a hotel developer, Dartmouth College, or Hanover developer Jay Campion. The Miller Chevrolet Cadillac property, which is accessed on Labombard Road, is adjacent to the New Hampshire National Guard Armory on Heater Road. The property is also next to a planned hotel and conference center under review by Lebanon planning authorities, and near a natural gas depot under development by Campion.

    One possible buyer mentioned is Dartmouth Coach, which has a facility on nearby Etna Road.

    (Valley News). If I’m not mistaken, Miller is the dealership that eventually acquired Rodgers’ Garage, the REO/Packard/Chevrolet dealer on Lebanon Street where the VAC now stands.

  • That natural gas project is by Campion’s Valley Green Natural Gas, which plans to transfer gas from tanker trucks on Route 120 and then send it by pipeline to Hanover, particularly to Dartmouth (Valley News 18 May 2014, 4 November 2014). Dartmouth will finish analyzing a possible fuel switch this fall (Valley News).


Notes   [ + ]

1. ”Anonymous $10 Million Gift Will Transform Teaching at the Hood Museum of Art,” Hood Museum of Art Quarterly (Winter 2015), 10, available at
2. Hannah Silverstein, “Book Arts Workshop: Hands-On Learning, Global Reach,” Dartmouth Now (25 February 2015), at

The inevitable demolition news

First, the Brown game takes place today. It will be the last game played before Jens Larson’s 1923 West Stands at Memorial Field. The steel-framed concrete seating terraces will be demolished and removed from behind the brick facade, which will remain, beginning this week.

Second, The Dartmouth reports that:

The College also plans to rebuild the Ledyard Clubhouse. The clubhouse, which used to house a few students, was vacated last fall following water intrusion and mold buildup. Hogarty said the College will eliminate the residential component when Ledyard is rebuilt.

“Rebuilt” means “replaced,” of course. This news has also been a long time coming. Students have been designing replacements for years — the original 1930 building was designed by a student, in fact — and the Milone & Macbroom Riverfront Master Plan showed a replacement building in the long term. It is worth mentioning that the Ledyard Monument is not in its original location and so probably needn’t be kept where it is.

Ledyard Canoe Club interior photo by Meacham

Interior of Ledyard looking north in 2005

Third, the focus of the article in The Dartmouth is the news that the Moosilauke Ravine Lodge feasibility study recommends demolishing and replacing the Lodge. Maclay Architects, which conducted the study, includes a drawing of the main (west) facade of a possible Ravine Lodge replacement:

detail of Maclay drawing of MRL facade

Detail of Maclay drawing of west facade of new Ravine Lodge

The drawing shows a building that seems both grander and more rustic, or more self-consciously rustic, than the 1938 Lodge. It lacks the extremely broad gable of the old lodge, but it has a signature form of its own. Maclay has extensive timber-framing experience, and with big logs scarce these days, this lodge appears to be a timber-framed building clad in shingles.

The Board of Trustees could decide whether to demolish the old building in the spring.

The Wilson Hall Elm has fallen

The Alumni Office’s twitter account has a photo of the huge elm tree on the ground in front of the Hood Museum. The Valley News reports that the tree struck Wilson as it fell, but it sounds like the damage is minor.

On the bright side, this frees up Tod Williams and Billie Tsien as they redesign Wilson’s entrance.

Other items:

  • The Hanover Crew’s boathouse is being built.
  • ORW designed the landscape for the Williamson Building at DHMC and has some nice images of the design.
  • ORW also has put up a project page for the transit hub in front of the Hop. The original design included a little heated pavilion.
  • The conceptual design for Boora’s Hopkins Center renovation was completed during Spring 2013 (OPD&PM).

An entrance gateway idea

The riverfront master plan has already been mentioned here, but a reading of the plan’s new page on the OPDPM site has turned up some interesting proposals.

At the lower entrance to Tuck Drive, the plan recommends:

  • Preserving the existing brick pillars, built as part of Tuck Drive;
  • Replacing the metal guard rails with simple wooden rails in keeping with the school’s outdoorsy theme; and
  • Installing a new sign for the college.

Also interesting is the solution to the Fuller Boathouse problem: “Accommodate increased storage space needs by constructing new Fuller boathouse into hillside that is double current size.”

The Riverfront Master Plan

The College Planner has made available long-term proposals of the Riverfront Master Plan (pdf) by Milone & MacBroom of Waterbury Vt.

The plan contains several intriguing ideas:

  • New buildings behind and next to (north of) the Friends Boathouse.
  • The expansion of the Fuller Boathouse and the rebuilding or removal of the singles shed next to Fuller.
  • An addition to Ledyard Canoe Club (one hopes it is an addition: it could be a replacement) and the removal of the three boat sheds behind Ledyard.
  • On Tuck Drive, a Sewer Pump House.
  • The transformation of much of the current large parking lot into parkland.

Fullington Farm yet closer to becoming a rowing venue

Discussions and controversies continue to slow the plan of the friends of Hanover High rowing to turn a part of Fullington Farm into a boating headquarters (Valley News article, Planning Board minutes Sept. 6 (pdf), Valley News article 1, article 2, Friends).

The Valley News noted on December 16 that the crew was allowed to move in but was denied permission to hold early-morning practices.

[Update 06.03.2013: Broken link to Friends site replaced.]
[Update 05.12.2013: Broken link to Friends article replaced.]
[Update 03.31.2013: Broken link to Friends article replaced.]

Completion of the new dock

The Dartmouth reports on the project, and the Planner has some closer photos. The D also had an article in July. (The Planner’s Office now has not only a blog and website but also a domain name,

Although the dock project includes bank stabilization and plantings, it continues the trend of intensified development on the east bank of the river between the bridge and the canoe club. As recently as 1985, the docks were less noticeable, the bridge was smaller, lower, and much less prominent, and the assertive boathouse was nonexistent.

Instead of maintaining the fiction that this limited site is a part of nature, could it be developed heavily, with a broad granite pedestrian corniche? Let’s promenade on the Ledyard Malecón.

Connecticut River from Ledyard Bridge, 2008

Almost a bathing pavilion

Dartmouth will build a relatively elaborate ADA-compliant swimming dock and a kiosk upstream from the bridge (The Dartmouth).

The College Planner’s blog has a post with a plan (pdf) and a detailed regulatory submission (pdf). This project is part of something bigger: a master plan for the riverfront (Planning post, post).

New boathouses planned

The Upper Valley seems to have considerable pent-up demand for rowing facilities. UK Architects’ design for a Vermont-side boathouse near the Wilder Dam for the Upper Valley Rowing Foundation appears to be delayed by tax or land-use questions (UVRF minutes September 2008 [pdf]).

At the other end of town, past the Chieftain, the Friends of Hanover High School Rowing purchased Fullington Farm from Dartmouth in 2008 (UVRF minutes May 2008). The group plans to begin rowing there in 2010 (UVRF minutes September 2008 [pdf], Valley News). The Friends’ page on Facebook notes that Toronto architect Daniel Johnson is designing a boathouse.

[Update 03.31.2013: Broken link to May 2008 minutes removed.]

No hope for a “Boathouse Row”

A lot of river-related planning activity has focused on the Fullington Farm/Chieftain Inn area north of campus recently.

Although the Upper Valley Rowing Foundation seems to have settled on a site closer to Wilder Dam for its future boathouse (design by U.K. Architects), its past meeting minutes have mentioned an interest in buying Fullington Farm, or at least a right to use part of it, from Dartmouth. Now the Friends of Hanover High Crew have signed an agreement with Dartmouth and plan to build a community boathouse on the farm (UVRF May 2008 minutes pdf).

Fullington Farm is the site of the Dartmouth Organic Farm and might be the location of the Lyme Road site that is occasionally proposed as a new home for Thayer School (see 2002 Master Plan, 14 pdf).

At the Chieftain, Black Bear Sculling runs a sculling program. Now the Chieftain is requesting a zoning variance to allow a private club on the property (Zoning Board of Adjustment July 10, 2008 pdf). The zoning board minutes do not indicate the purpose of the club or whether it has anything to do with rowing.

[Update 11.11.2013: Broken link to the Chieftain removed.]
[Update 12.02.2012: Broken link to Chieftain fixed and broken link to Zoning Board minutes removed.]

Upper Valley Rowing Club Boathouse projected

The boathouse of the Upper Valley Rowing Club, formerly the Dresden Rowing Club, is projected to open this year near the Wilder Dam. It appears in a rendering by U.K. Architects of Hanover.

The Connecticut Valley Spectator wrote on the club’s growth, reprinted in Rowing News.

[Update 11.12.2012: Broken links to firm site fixed and Rowing News omitted.]
[Update 01.24.2007: Link to firm’s site added.]