Image of new Ledyard; selecting Ravine Lodge timbers


Co-Op Food Store in Centerra

———

11.28.2016 update: DEN project page link added.


Breweries, Fullington Farm demo, suspension railways, etc.

  • The Valley News reports that the Norwich Historic Preservation Commission was named the Commission of the Year by the National Alliance of Preservation Commissions.

  • Prolific N.H. beer blogger Adam Chandler posts a short but positive review of a new brewery in WRJ, the River Roost. It’s less than a quarter-mile down South Main from the original Catamount Brewery, sadly missed. (Some friends and I built a website for Catamount as a class project in the Spring of 1995, but I don’t think we ever showed it to the company. And it’s good to see the venerable Seven Barrel Brewery still going; we ate there five times the first week it was open.)

  • It is interesting that the new plaque at Memorial Field (Flickr photo), which kinda quotes Richard Hovey’s line “The hill-winds know their name,” honors alums who: (a) [have] “served,” (b) “are serving,” or (c) “will serve their country.” Although it’s not clear why “have served” is not sufficient to cover everyone, especially since the only names known to the hill winds are those of alums who have striven, fought, and died, the implicit inclusion of international students in their home countries is a nice touch. (It almost reminds one of the memorial at New College, Oxford, to the German members who died in WWI; Trinity College, Oxford, created its own memorial listing the German and Austrian members who gave their lives “for their country” in that war just last year.)

  • ORL (as of last spring?) is now organizing its dorm info pages according to House Communities instead of the old clusters. Thus we have West true to purple, South in black, etc. Each page presents one of the nice Burakian aerials.

    There are still apparently no authentic pages by the House members themselves, not even rogue pages — although the Houses do have members. Let’s get with it, people!

  • The Valley News reported on Dartmouth’s demolition of the Fullington Farmhouse north of town. Here’s how it looked in context (view south toward town):

  • Sheldon Pennoyer Architects, PLLC of Concord designed the new Dartmouth Coach bus terminal in Lebanon, on the site of the Cadillac dealership on Labombard Road. Construction is by North Branch. See also the Valley News.

  • Beekeeping at the Orgo Farm is the subject of a news item.

  • The Dartmouth has a story on a recent celebration of the history of Dartmouth Broadcasting.

  • Courtyard Café employees will be driving a new food truck “to support programs and activities associated with the House systems” according to the Campus Services newsletter (pdf). The truck will accept only DBA payments (sounds good) and will be available only on nights other than Friday, Saturday, or Sunday (??).

  • The medical and other waste that the college and hospital buried at Rennie Farm years ago continues to cause problems (Valley News overview, cleanup announcement).

  • Neighbors continue to object to the plans for an athletic fieldhouse behind Thompson Arena. As reported by the Valley News, neighbors withdrew their zoning challenge during June but the controversy continues.

  • Back in 2009 Dartmouth Engineer Magazine published an interesting article called “Thayer in the Landscape” that depicted engineering projects by alumni around the world.

  • According to the Mac website Six Colors, the least popular emoji depicts a suspension railway. While passing through Wuppertal, Germany, this summer, I observed that city’s suspension railway, and boy is it fantastic. Wuppertal is a long city in the valley of the winding Wupper River, and the route of the elevated railway is established by the river itself rather than by the street network. The track is hung beneath pairs of great 19th-century metal legs that straddle the river. Here is a Street View showing the track along the river:

    Here is a view with a train coming along the river:

    The stations (old and new) also must straddle the river and essentially take the form of bridges.

———

[Update 09.18.2016: Tuck School expansion item removed for use in future post.]


New faculty houses, etc.

  • Fascinating and unexpected historic New Hampshire mica mine for sale: Eagle Tribune.

  • Bora (formerly Boora) Architects have put up a couple new images and larger versions of their old ones for the Hopkins Center expansion. The new porte-cochere, which would tear down Harrison’s stone wall and put up a transparent box with a glass “curtain” wall, is striking for the literalism of its opening-up of the Hop. The new reference to the project as “unbuilt” is troubling.

  • The Valley News reports on a Cambodian food truck that serves Hanover.

  • Big Green Alert reports on the plaque honoring Kathy Slattery Phillips in the new press box at Memorial Field.

  • Dartmouth Now reports that the board of trustees, at its Commencement meeting,

    affirmed plans to proceed with the renovation and expansion of the Hood Museum of Art. The trustees also voted to approve $10 million for construction of the Moosilauke Ravine Lodge and $22 million to build a new indoor athletics practice facility. Each of these projects will be funded through private gifts to Dartmouth.

  • One of the goals of the current Thayer School fundraising campaign (Dartmouth Now):

    Construct a 180,000-square-foot building, which will nearly double the school’s total floor space. The building, to be located directly south of the MacLean Engineering Sciences Center, will provide more space for classroom teaching and experiential learning, with an emphasis on Thayer’s growing efforts in design and research priorities in energy technology and engineering-in-medicine.

  • The Town of Orford celebrated the 250th anniversary of its founding with a reading of its charter on the East Common (Here in Hanover).

  • The Rauner Library Blog reports on a time capsule from 1977 that contained a can of Miller High Life. The can was kept in the archives but had to be drained recently.

  • Thanks to the U.Va. School of Architecture for including the Campus Guide in its 2016 Alumni Exhibit, on university living-learning environments.

  • The Valley News has a story on the Hartford Christian Camp. It sounds like a lovely place, and the kind of summertime experience that was common a century ago. In Charlottesville, Virginia, a similar camp has been incorporated into the city and its surviving cottages have become year-round houses:


  • U.Va. has a collection of campus then/now photos.

  • The Dartmouth has an article on the school’s architecture studio.

  • Big Green Alert reports on the new FieldTurf at Memorial Field.

  • Volunteers in Meriden are digitizing the E.H. Baynes slide archive, the Valley News reports. Baynes was the conservationist and traveling lecturer who, at a talk in Webster Hall during the early 1900s, suggested that Dartmouth students raise money to save the bison and adopt the animal as their mascot.

  • Green Building Advisor has a detailed look at the construction of the four new modular houses being installed for faculty as part of the “house communities” plan. The school has a video update on the construction. Big Green Alert has earlier and later photos of the tensile “community” building that now stands by Davis Varsity House.

  • It is common these days for sportswear companies to design team uniforms, logos, and mascots. For the British team at the 2016 Olympics, Adidas worked with both the College of Arms (England) and the Lord Lyon King of Arms (Scotland) to create a coat of arms that would be conferred by a dual grant (College of Arms news).


The Black VAC

VAC sidewalk, Meacham photo

Love the broad sidewalk on the Lebanon Street side. It would be even better with some ground-level shops, but this is a good start.

VAC rust, Meacham photo

This is the largest of the famous rust stains, and the only one that really detracted from the building’s appearance last summer. The concrete wall obviously shouldn’t have been pulled out far enough to catch the runoff from the Norwegian slate, that’s all. There is no point in trying to keep up with cleaning it as long as the stone still contains iron oxide. Instead the school should (1) install a drip rail to channel the runoff, (2) cast a little Modernist concrete gargoyle for this spot, or (3) embrace the stain and commission an artist to incorporate it into an evolving work of art, perhaps by using stains in other colors.

VAC interior, Meacham photo

That exterior board-formed concrete wall continues inside the building.

A detailed article from structural engineering firm Lemessurier (pdf) on the construction of the VAC contains these interesting tidbits:

Machado and Silvetti Associates designed a basement in the building that was conveniently situated directly atop the highest ridge of the bedrock spine. Although the basement required leveling of appreciable regions of bedrock, this geometry of the building allowed for a stable, flat bearing surface in the central portion of the structure.

To increase the overall efficiency of the foundation placement, the contractor suggested that larger pits be dug by hand while some shafts continued to be slowly drilled elsewhere on-site. The proposed hand digging involved timber lagging to support the excavation. A single worker shoveled soil into a bucket by hand, and the bucket was then lifted from the pit base to the surface. Ironically, a simple technique used to excavate mine shafts in Thoreau’s era would become critical to the success of a state-ofthe-art 21st-century construction project. So atypical was this type of construction that the workers and engineers present at the site came to refer to the work as 1850s foundations.

The curved wood panel ceiling is the only surface in the building not rectilinear in its expression. The art forum is otherwise bound by straight lines that are vertical, horizontal, and even diagonal as the grand staircase descends from the upper levels. The columns, however, are set away from the main forum to allow an unimpeded view of the central space as the visitor walks the hallways between offices and studios. The absence of columns in the immediate vicinity necessitates serially cantilevering floor framing—in other words, cantilevers off cantilevers off cantilevers—extending into the forum space and supporting loads by means other than direct column support.

VAC window onto Hop, Meacham photo


Some campus photos and notes

Steam Tunnel access grate on the Green, Google Street View

Steam Tunnel access under Green, Meacham photo

Steam Tunnel access grate on the Green, underside

The first stage of the steam tunnel’s construction, south of this grate, was a test meant to determine whether such a project would be economical in a ledge environment.

image

North bank of HBs at former entrance to Hop, view to west

Until recently, students entered the Hop at the end of the room. The entrance was closed off and a replacement of the same configuration built just to the north.

Hop interior at Minary entrance, Meacham photo

The new Hop entrance, view to northwest onto Zahm/Memorial Garden

(Have the memorial plaques attached to the Inn there been moved to Memorial Field? That would make sense. This is not their first location anyway.)

Triangle House, Meacham photo

Triangle House entrance (west) facade

Even more than the society houses on the south side of Webster Avenue, Triangle House has a well-used student entrance on one side, shown here, and a formal street entrance on the other.

LSC bike pavilion, Meacham photo

LSC bike pavilion

This elaborate bicycle shelter for the Life Sciences Center joins a couple other pavilions in the area.

Gilman plaque, Meacham photo

Plaque moved from Gilman to LSC

LSC name lettering, Meacham photo

The town changed the street address of the building to get it to match.


Every tub on its own bottom

  • A neat color view of Dartmouth Row, probably from the 1850s, appeared on Antiques Roadshow.

  • This quotation about Dartmouth is intriguing:

    Although on the surface it might sound heretical, the institution is looking to reduce future building as much as possible. Conscious of the escalating costs of higher education, the college’s senior administration has instituted a program that requires academic departments to pay rent, essentially to make them more conscious of space costs and usage efficiencies. “The greenest building is the one that is never built,” [Director of Campus Design & Construction John] Scherding says.1

    So will rents rise in the most desirable buildings as departments compete for space? Will a wealthy department be allowed to build itself a new building if it can afford it?

  • At one point, the Wilson Architects design for the new Thayer/CS building envisioned a structure of 150,000 sf and a parking garage holding 400 cars (a LinkedIn profile). The Dartmouth has an article on the proposed parking structure, which the college now seems to be emphasizing less.

  • Remember the North Campus Academic Center? Back in 2014, CFO Rick Mills explained that the project was on hold:

    “We’re actually taking this year — both capitalizing some of the expenses that were incurred [and] some implementation expenses that were utility relocation and other things. … We’re also writing down some of the planning expenses, because as originally conceived, it’s not moving forward in that capacity.” According to Mills, completely new plans for that site are “going through a completely new process of evaluation” that the Dean of Faculty is discussing with President Hanlon and the Board of Trustees. The plans will have to take into account “the external science funding environment for what we can expect from NIH and other places [and] that the Williamson Translational Research building is under way …”2

    There are plenty of good reasons not to build the large Kim-era design, but with Gilman and Kresge now boarded up and the medical library occupying temporary quarters in a former nursing school dormitory, it would seem that something needs to be built.

  • Here’s an interesting Bldgblog post on the ghost streets of Los Angeles.

  • The Valley News covers the installation of a plaque at Harvard honoring slaves there. Although the idea is not new (see U.Va.) and the wording might be a bit awkward (in an expectedly academic way — “worked here as enslaved persons”), it seems like a good idea. Where would such a plaque be appropriate at Dartmouth? Eleazar Wheelock’s house would be a good place, since Wheelock was the chief slaveowner in early Hanover. The writers would have to be careful about using the word “here” or the phrase “on this site,” since the house was in a different location when slaves worked there. And the house is no longer owned by the college anyway, so the new owner would have to favor the idea.

  • A Google Street View image of the rear of the Boss Tennis Center, as seen from the adjoining neighborhood:


    The fieldhouse proposed for the site next door (Bing aerial) is not popular with the neighbors (The Dartmouth). Here is the latest from the April 5 Planning Board meeting (pdf):

    Submission of Application for Site Plan Review by the Trustees of Dartmouth College to construct a 69,860 sf indoor practice facility on the “sunken garden” site, east of Boss Tennis Center, 4 Summer Court, Tax Map 34, Lot 102, in the “I” zoning district. The applicant has requested that consideration of this proposal be postponed until May 3. There is concern about the proposed conditions of approval regarding the adequacy of the town stormwater system to handle the proposed stormwater flows. More research about the drainage in that section of Hanover will be done.

  • From the same agenda item:

    In addition, the College has submitted another site plan review application for an expansion of the soccer pavilion at Burham Field. Both the indoor practice facility and the soccer pavilion projects rely on the eastern portion of Thompson Parking Lot for material laydown, construction trailers, contractor parking, porta-potties, etc., as well as Summer Street for the sole construction access for both sites. Abutters to the indoor practice facility project were contacted by the College to apprise them of the request for continuance.

    The original “sports pavilion,” designed by Freeman French Freeman, Inc., has an appealing scale; one wonders how it will be expanded. Let’s hope that 19th-century suburban metro station feeling isn’t erased from the building’s south facade. (And will Dartmouth’s most notable unnamed building finally be named in honor of someone or something?)

  • “Dartmouth Dining Services (DDS) is also involved in the MDF effort by establishing a C-store (mini convenience store) in each of the house centers. The C-store will be fashioned after those in Goldstein Hall and in East Wheelock. DDS is also rolling out a new senior apartment meal plan for undergraduate students who will live in campus apartments” (“Campus Services Supports Moving Dartmouth Forward,” Behind the Green (2 March 2016), 2 pdf).

  • A contest involving drawings of the Frost Sculpture in College Park.

  • A story in the Valley News reports that a developer is buying hundreds of acres near the Joseph Smith Memorial for an ideal city. The NewVistas Foundation website proposes “a settlement comprised of 50 diamond-shaped communities of 15,000 to 20,000 people each, which are located adjacent to each other.” The standard urban building form includes an underground “podway,” a bit like the Disney “utilidor,” and the shopping is to be done in podway-level malls, protected from the elements…

  • —————————-

    1. Russ Klettke, “The High Performance Trail,” American Builders Quarterly (2016).
    2. Rick Mills, interviewed by Charles C.W. Jang, “Dart Kapital,” The Dartmouth Review (1 June 2014) (brackets and ellipses original).

    Cemetery viaduct to be built

    The Valley News reports that Hanover residents voted on Tuesday for the zoning amendment that the college had requested as part of a project related to Thayer School expansion.

    Residents also approved an amendment that would allow development near or in a cemetery in some circumstances. The official zoning amendment proposal form (pdf) supplies this detail:

    Providing direct pedestrian access from the parking structure and Thayer campus to the College’s administrative offices, Mass Row, 53 Commons and downtown is desirable to the Town and College. In order to accommodate an elevated pedestrian walkway, construction of footings [in the Dartmouth Cemetery] is anticipated.

    While the former parking deck idea is not a part of this zoning change, a parking structure certainly would be an important terminus for such a viaduct. The Planning Board minutes of 2 February 2016 (pdf), written back when the parking deck was a hot topic, say:

    A pathway is also proposed from a proposed parking facility to the Green, to enhance connectivity of the west campus to the main campus, and to provide easy off-highway access from the proposed parking facility to the Green.

    Aha. The viaduct that Larson proposed during the late 1920s, shown on his 1928 master plan, looks set to become a reality. (See also the Westway proposal here.)

    Detail of Larson 1928 master plan

    Detail of 1928 plan with viaduct lined in red

    The map associated with the zoning amendment gives a general idea of the route of the new work, with the viaduct shown as a dashed orange line through the cemetery:

    Planning Board map from April 2016 video

    Map from “Hanover Planning Board Changes April 2016” video at 9:37 mark

    The viaduct presumably will be an extension of Cemetery Lane, the road known until relatively recently as Sanborn Lane. (The map above also shows the realignment of the bottom of Engineering Drive at West Wheelock Street and the reconfiguration of the turnaround at the end of Tuck Mall.)




    Keats and Yeats are on your side; Street View image from Google.

    The cemetery gate, minus the unfortunately-located parking signage, would make a nice entrance to the viaduct. Here’s hoping the bridge is a work of the engineer’s art worthy of this historic place and its Classical monuments of carved stone. Wilson Architects, the firm that appears to be designing the Thayer building, designed a set of impressive campus pedestrian bridges at Vanderbilt University (a view of one, a view of another).

    This will not be the first bridge in the cemetery: during the early 1880s, the cemetery association spanned the northern ravine with a timber bridge. It shows up on this 1890 map and a photo was reproduced in Dartmouth Now. It became unsafe and was removed by the 1920s.

    ———-

    [Update 05.16.2016: Reference to Dartmouth Now added and historic bridge re-described as being of timber, not iron.]

    [Update 05.12.2016: Note about dashed orange line added.]


    The West End Framework Plan, etc.

    • Regarding the Hood, Hop Director Emeritus Lewis Crickard reprises Prince Charles’s National Gallery “carbuncle” comment in a letter to the Valley News.

    • The Moosilauke project includes the “[r]elocation of the preserved Manager’s Cabin, a log structure built by Ross McKenney” (FAQs).

    • The article in Dartmouth Now about the construction of new social buildings and professors’ residences mentions that the residences are being built off-site by Unity Homes. It looks like the school is using the Värm model.

    • There is a drive to name the lounge area of the Evans Basketball Suite in the Berry Sports Center after Coach Chris Wielgus.

    • The Valley News has an article about the indoor practice building/fieldhouse and the feelings of the neighbors. It is hard to identify the exterior cladding from the rendering — is it metal?

    • This makes one think of Chicken Farmer I Still Love You: a playground in Ferndale, Washington is going to have a miniature version of a local landmark bridge, complete with graffito.

    • The West End Framework Plan:

      Dartmouth recently received a gift to develop a Framework Plan for the West End of campus, including the Thayer and Computer Science building, a new Tuck building, landscape, parking, infrastructure and wayfinding. Led by Joanna Whitcomb, the Director of Campus Planning, this project will engage campus stakeholders and others in the planning and zoning process and in developing strategic capacity and growth options for the entire district. The Framework Plan should be complete by September, 2016.1

      For background, here’s the description of the master plan process from the website of the overall campus master plan:

      The plan will address both campus-wide systems (“themes”) and specific strategic planning areas (“neighborhoods”) that warrant more intensive study. The neighborhoods approach is a useful planning tool that enables the study of distinct challenges and opportunities in emerging precincts but is always kept within a holistic view of the campus as a whole.

      Master plan neighborhoods include:
      Core Campus
      North End
      West End
      Arts & Athletics2

    • There are salmon in the Connecticut River again (Field & Stream).

    • At least one surviving drawing shows students playing bat-and-ball games on the Green in the eighteenth century. In 1779, President John Wheelock issued “Regulations for the security of the College building from damage,” which stated:

      If any student shall play ball or use any other deversion that exposes the College or Hall windows within 3 rods of either he shall be fined two shillings for the first offence 4s for the 2d and so on at the discretion of the President or Tutors.3

      (Playing “ball” generally meant playing a bat-and-ball game, not playing football.) Informal baseball games continued over the years, and in 1862 students formed the Dartmouth Baseball Club. The club faced another college for the first time in 1866 when it met the Nicean Club of Amherst. The Baseball Team celebrated its 150th anniversary recently. TV station WCAX has a video (via BGA), and the Valley News has an article.

    ———————

    1. “West End Framework Plan,” Behind the Green (2 March 2016) pdf.
    2. “Master Plan Process,” Dartmouth Campus Master Plan, at http://www.dartmouth.edu/~masterplan/about/planprocess.html (viewed 21 April 2016).
    3. Wheelock, “Regulations” (1779), in John King Lord, A History of Dartmouth College 1815-1909 (Concord, N.H.: The Rumford Press, 1913), 593.

    Houses update, parking garage discussion

    Detail of House Center B rendering from OPDC video

    Detail of rendering of House Center B shown in OPDC video

    • Dartmouth Now has a post on “Founders’ Day,” the day when “students gathered at Baker-Berry Library to receive personalized letters indicating their membership in one of the six new house communities” (see also photos). Each House gets a different color: probably arbitrary, but not much more arbitrary than most of the House names.

    • The Valley News has an article by Tris Wykes on Thompson Arena’s 40 years.

    • The Thayer School construction project of the future sounds like an expansion rather than a new building, which would fit with the Thayer tradition. (See the Planning Board minutes 2 February 2016 pdf.)

    • There is lots of talk about the Thayer School parking structure proposed for the intersection of Thayer Drive and West Wheelock Street (Valley News).

    • “A pathway is also proposed from a proposed parking facility to the Green, to enhance connectivity of the west campus to the main campus, and to provide easy off-highway access from the proposed parking facility to the Green” (Planning Board minutes 2 February 2016 pdf).

    • “The College has no plans to undertake construction for the School of Graduate and Advanced Studies, though administrators are exploring options for establishing a designated community space for graduate students” Dartmouth Now).

    • The college’s Flickr photostream has a picture of the temporary fence recently erected on North Main Street.

    • The Valley News ran a photo that it described this way:

      Garrett Hubert, of Newport, is the first to carry the torch during the 30-mile run, roller-ski and ski relay to Newport from Hanover on Friday. A relay team re-enacted the solo trip John McCrillis took in 1916 when he skied to Newport from Dartmouth College to attend the town’s first Winter Carnival. David McCrillis, left, is McCrillis’ grandson.


    Indoor practice facility going ahead

    The trustees have voted to build the indoor practice facility next to the Boss Tennis Center (Dartmouth Now, Valley News, Big Green Alert). The 2013 project page has a conceptual rendering by Sasaki.The building will likely be finished by the Fall of 2017.

    The floor of the field where the building is to be built, sometimes called the Sunken Garden, is well below the level of the parking lot (Bing aerial). To the visitor, the building will appear to be a modest shed. Inside will be a vast space. The rectangle of artificial turf should measure about 180 x 255 feet.


    Moosilauke Ravine Lodge items, other links

    • Microsoft’s Bing, which has always had much better oblique aerial photography than Google, now has a Google Street View competitor called Streetside. The car came through Hanover last summer (around July 10?). Here are Memorial Field’s West Stands under construction, the upper reaches of Tuck Drive as service road, and the new sorority on Occom Ridge.

    • The Art of Ping Pong raises money for BBC Children in Need with painted ping pong paddles.

    • One of the mascots in the running to replace the Lord Jeff at Amherst College is the moose, The New York Times reports. A mascot does not have to be local, but if you are wondering whether they really have moose in Massachusetts, the paper reports that they do.

    • The Rauner Library Blog looks at a book of photos of Ike at the Grant, the construction of the Hopkins Center, Arthur H. Chivers 1902 and his study of the Cemetery, and a 19th-century dance card (featuring the arms of the Earl of Dartmouth).

    • There is an interesting photo of the demolition of the rear addition to Crosby Hall in the Photographic Files. The Blunt addition was built in its place.

    • The Valley News has an article on boosting activity in downtown Lebanon. Ahhh, the Shoetorium.

    • The Rauner Library Blog has been getting into foodways, looking at recipes for Mountain sticky Stew and Green Machine, the latter being a lemon-lime punch mixed in a wastebasket.

    • The college has a video on the construction of the Class of 1966 Bunkhouse at Moosilauke. Construction is going on now. The Battle Family has donated a challenge gift to spur fundraising for the replacement of the Ravine Lodge (Dartmouth Now).

    • Kiki Smith’s Refuge (earlier called Hoarfrost with Rabbit?) now occupies the plaza outside the VAC.

    • The Washington Post has an article on tontines. It states:

      These arrangements were so widespread in the 18th century that the young United States almost ran a tontine itself: Alexander Hamilton proposed a tontine to pay down national debt after the Revolutionary War. Though his idea was rejected, local communities often set up tontines in Colonial times to raise money for large projects. Scattered in cities all along the East Coast, including in the nation’s capital, there have been buildings that were financed through a tontine. Some roads continue to bear the name Tontine, a sign of how they were paid for.

      Hanover’s Tontine Building, which stood basically where J. Crew is from 1813 to 1887, was presumably funded by a tontine. (An alternative theory is that the building was named for a well-known building in Boston that actually was funded by a tontine.) The library has some great old photos.

      In response to the Post, Paul Krugman properly reminds us of The Wrong Box, the 1966 Michael Caine picture whose plot is based on the operation of a tontine.

    • Dartmouth is enlarging the size of the lot at 6 Rope Ferry Road (expanding it rearward toward the pond?) in order to make the lot large enough to subdivide. The college has no plans at the moment for the new, empty lot (2 June 2015 Planning Board minutes pdf).

    • Jon Roll ’67 of Roll Barresi & Associates did the campus signage for the professional schools (2001 Master Plan pdf, 15). The signs share a look with those the firm designed for Smith College. The Master Plan contains this intriguing comment: “[T]he college continues to debate the wisdom of a sign on Wheelock Street reading ‘Dartmouth College.'” The design of a sign-like monument at the corner of Main and Wheelock was a project assigned to Architecture I classes around 1992. A sign really does not seem necessary here.


    Wheelock’s Mansion House sold

    The Valley News reports that the college is selling Eleazar Wheelock’s house to the Eleazar Wheelock Society, a “pan-denominational resource promoting a constructive role for faith in learning environments like Dartmouth,” as well as at Dartmouth itself. The group will remodel the building to house 24 students. The college only acquired the house a few years ago, and it seems to be imposing a private historic preservation covenant in this sale. The renovation that turned the house into the Howe Library around 1900 was designed by Charles A. Rich, while the ominous/cute brick stacks addition is later.

    The “Mansion House” for the college president was built with funds from London evangelical John Thornton, so its acquisition by this group seems particularly appropriate. The group was founded by alumni in 2008 and aims to establish “a reproducible model that can be duplicated on college and university campuses elsewhere.” It admires Wheelock “because of his commitment to the biblical worldview.”

    In thanking Joseph Asch for his kind mention of this site on Dartblog, I am compelled to note Princeton’s preservation of an early president’s house1 that is both older than Dartmouth’s and still in its original location. A 1764 engraving by Dawkins (reproduced in a Princeton news article) shows the Maclean House in front and to the right of Nassau Hall. The two buildings are still standing and appear in this recent Bing aerial.

    Putting the president’s house alongside the lawn that lay between the street and the college proper was a standard practice. This image shows Dartmouth’s president’s house in its original location at the righthand end of Dartmouth Row.2

    1830s Currier engraving of Dartmouth

    Detail of ca. 1834 Currier engraving of Dartmouth Row showing President’s House at far right. Image reversed from erroneous original disposition.

    The relation of the president’s house to the college building made early Dartmouth look very much like early Princeton.3

    [Update 11.13.2015: Final three paragraphs added.]

    ——-

    1. The house is not that of Princeton’s founding president, if the school had such a person: the College of New Jersey was established in Elizabeth and moved to Newark before it settled in Princeton.
    2. Although Wheelock died before Dartmouth Hall was built, he anticipated the construction of a college on the hill and likely had the site in mind when he built his own house.
    3. Early views of the two schools are so similar, in fact, that Dartmouth once used the Dawkins engraving of Nassau Hall as the cover of its annual report in error; confirmation will be posted as it is found.

    History, buildings, etc.

    • The Rauner blog has posts on Memorial Field, dorm room plans, fraternity meeting minutes, the WWI trenches around Leverone’s site, and class day clay pipes.

    • A Review interview with Thayer School’s Senior Associate Dean Ian Baker says:

      In addition to serving as the Associate Dean, Baker also chaired a community board overseeing and discussing the construction of a new building for the engineering school. The new building will be located next to MacLean where the parking lot is. “We have yet to figure out where the car park goes,” Baker mentioned, wryly suggesting that it was the only problem in the plan. Baker also serves on several academic boards for the school.

      The trustees approved a Thayer School parking garage on the Cummings Lot site back in February of 2002 (post).

    • An actual historic preservation campaign has sprung up at Dartmouth: Save Moosilauke.

    • The 65 Bunkhouse is finished, photos of the decication.

    • Nice black-and-white photos of Hanover architecture by Trevor Labarge are on line. The post office pediment looks quite grand, almost Londonesque.

    • The Hanover Conservancy is thinking about Kendal’s expansion onto the Chieftain property

    • The Valley News is covering the ongoing negotiations over construction of a palliative care center near DHMC and Boston Lot Lake.

    • The Williamson seems to be wrapping up (2014 press release, Turner Construction page).

    • ORW Landscape Architects and Planners of WRJ has been acquired by Greenman – Pedersen, Inc. of New York (pdf). ORW designed the recent improvements to the sidewalk and porte-cochere of the Inn (pdf).

    • The Norwich ad firm called Flannel created Dartmouth’s polished Strategic Plan website and others.

    • The story of how Glasgow football club Partick Thistle F.C. (Wiki) got its new mascot is almost as odd as the mascot itself.

    • Old Division Football (“the Usual Game”) seems a bit like the Florentine calcio storico (New York Times).


    House professors’ dwelling sites selected

    The Valley News reports on the sites of the six dwellings of the house professors. (Each of the future “residential colleges,” also called “residential communities,” “houses,” and sometimes “clusters,” will have a resident professor.) Correlated with what are presumed to be the corresponding residential communities, the sites are:

    1. The existing Frost House (White House), part of the East Wheelock Cluster. (The continued use of this house is only implied in the article.)

    2. A new house at 16 Webster Avenue. The college will build a “two-story, three-bedroom building of about 3,000 square feet with an attached two-car garage” on vacant land west of the President’s House. Street View. This house presumably will serve the Russell Sage cluster.

    3. A new house at 5 Sanborn Road, near the Howe Library. This house and its southern yard will occupy the site of 18 East South Street, a corner house demolished recently, as well as 5 Sanborn Road, a house slated for demolition (June 2 Planning Board meeting minutes pdf). Street View. This house presumably will serve the Topliff cluster.

    4. The existing house at 2 Clement Road, a Tudorbethan cottage behind LALACS. Street View. This house presumably will serve the McLaughlin cluster, although it is not close by.

    5. A new house at 12 Allen Street, next to Panarchy. “On the corner of School Street and Allen Street, the college owns land zoned for three single-family homes, on which it plans to build two residences with a shared backyard.” According to June 2 Planning Board meeting minutes (pdf), “[t]he ravine will be filled to create a lot with less topographic relief. Tim shared a little history about the lot. A person had excavated a cave in the side of the ravine and lived there for some time.” Street View. One of the two new residences presumably will serve the Mass Row cluster, blocks away.

    6. The existing house at 3 ½ North Park Street, a rambling Victorian dwelling across from Triangle House. Street View. By process of elimination, this house is presumed to serve the Fayers cluster, although it is closer to East Wheelock.

    The college plans to begin site work on the new buildings in the fall “and may break ground as soon as next spring” (this and all other unattributed quotations are from the VN article).

    Some of these houses are quite distant from the clusters they are meant to serve; perhaps this is only an interim step, useful during the ten or twelve years before a major gift allows the construction of a permanent (non-prefab) dwelling within the bounds of each Residential Community.


    Here’s to the Polka Dot; other topics

    • The Valley News has an article with some superb photographs on the Polka Dot Restaurant by the tracks in White River Junction. The 1925 building seems to have hosted a diner from the beginning; owner Mary Shatney started working there in 1959 and had to close the place last year. It’s up for sale — let’s hope it remains a restaurant.

    • The Dartmouth Energy Program site is very impressive. In the history section, the excellent photo of the coal assistant seems to have been taken from the east end of the hall looking west. The narrow-gauge rails lead toward the coal hopper in the end of the building, now the site of the Hood Museum’s Bernstein Study-Storage Center. A couple of quibbles: first, “the good old days” actually began in 1770, not 1769; second, the timeline could mention the major addition of a second level to the building in 1922, apparently when the plant switched from coal to oil; and third, there’s something off about the wording of this sentence on the main page, however technically correct it might be: “While Dartmouth may be the smallest Ivy League university, we’re doing big things with energy efficiency.”

    • Excellent photo documentation of the construction of the West Stands continues at the Big Green Alert: April 24, April 23, April 22, April 19, April 18 (notable photos), April 8, April 7 (seating chart), March 23, and March 16.

    • The photo in the Valley News story on spring practice makes Memorial Field look as if it occupies an industrial wasteland. The runway at which Memorial Field’s concrete risers were stored for about six years, incidentally, was known as Miller Airport (Abandoned & Little-Known Airfields).

    • Victor Mair ’65 at Language Log takes on the word “schlump,” of “schlump season,” i.e. “mud season” (“breakup” in Alaska).

    • The Rauner Library Blog has interesting posts on the petition of Ledyard and others to be allowed to learn to dance and use the sword and a mysterious photo album called Along the Connecticut 1912.

    • The Watershed Studio website features several notable projects, including the Friends of Hanover Crew boathouse, the Organic Farm greenhouse, and a design for the replacement Ledyard Canoe Club.

    • Maybe the real test for the Residential Communities (a post here) will be the Commencement ceremony. Will the Communities be represented in the procession? The graduates will still have to march in alphabetical order, but will the House Professors carry the house emblems?

    • The West Wheelock Gateway District proposal is up for a vote and has been getting some press (Valley News, The Dartmouth). The VN story has this neat tidbit:

      Around the corner from Anderson, William Smalley owns a small white house sandwiched between rental buildings mostly filled with Dartmouth students.

      In an interview Monday at his home, where he has lived since 1938, Smalley said he welcomed the creation of the district and didn’t mind the parties the students occasionally threw.

      “Somebody said to me, ‘How can you stand them?'” he said of the students, but “I’ve never had a problem with them — never.”

    • The college’s Flickr account has a neat and unusual view of Dartmouth Row, Ascutney, Richardson, and the Wilder addition. See the photo of the graffiti inside the Bartlett Tower roof. The structure does not look particularly original (1895) but there are graffiti from 1910 and 1915, so perhaps it is.

    • The Hanover Master Plan (pdf) contains a number of interesting tidbits, including this one: “The Town’s boundary stones and monuments are also historic landmarks. Most have the first letters of the adjacent towns incised in them.”

    • “In devising the plan of the library building, you have contemplated its indefinite extension to meet the growth of the collections,” said Mellen Chamberlain at the dedication of Wilson Hall as the school library (Google Books).

    • “Areas of potential historic interest include theoriginal center of Town; the well field of the old Aqueduct Company south of the Greensboro Road; the Granite Quarry south of Greensboro Road; the Tilton Quarry east of Moose Mountain Road and one of the earliest slate quarries on the old Tisdale property” (Hanover Master Plan pdf).

    • Finding churches that have been put to interesting new uses is just too easy, so further examples will not be added to the post here that arguing that Rollins should be turned into a library. There is a pub in a former church in Nottingham, England, and a brewery and pub in a former church in Pittsburgh, where a Romanesque nave makes an impressive beer hall.

    • The Hanover Master Plan (pdf) also recommends National Register listing for various districts including the campus.

    • This has probably been posted here before, but Yale has construction photos and a slick video of the two new residential colleges it is building.

    • The Dartmouth has an article on near-future construction projects.

    • Not much is coming out about Thayer School’s master plan. “Because the college owns Tuck Drive, any attempt to better align it with West Street will have to wait until Dartmouth’s own building plans in the area are finalized, she said” (referring to Vicki Smith, Hanover’s senior planner) (Valley News).


    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 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.2

    • 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).

    —————————-

    1. “Anonymous $10 Million Gift Will Transform Teaching at the Hood Museum of Art,” Hood Museum of Art Quarterly (Winter 2015), 10, available at http://hoodmuseum.dartmouth.edu/docs/2015webreadyquarterly.pdf.
    2. Hannah Silverstein, “Book Arts Workshop: Hands-On Learning, Global Reach,” Dartmouth Now (25 February 2015), at
      http://now.dartmouth.edu/2015/02/book-arts-workshop-hands-on-learning-global-reach/.

    WWGD?

    Following the lead of the charrette, the Town is creating a West Wheelock Gateway zoning district (Planning Board WWGD details pdf). The area will have a higher density than before (Planning Board WWGD pdf). A lot of work and thought is going into this project:

    The amendment proposes permitted uses of single-family, two-family, multi-family dwellings, and parking facility. Proposed uses allowed by Special Exception include neighborhood retail sales, restaurant, and property management office. These non- residential uses will be limited to 1,000 sf. Parking is only required for the proprietor. The proposed building heights can accommodate 4-story buildings.

    Smith said UK Architects was hired to create a model of what could be. Chris Kennedy of UK Architects walked the Board through a digital terrain model of full build-out. Kennedy said in an effort to align houses on the street, there is a requirement that 30% of a building must be located within 6′ of the front setback.

    (Planning Board minutes 2 December 2014 pdf). More discussion, including talk of where to draw the southern boundary, appears in the minutes (Planning Board minutes 9 December 2014 pdf).


    Names that change, or don’t change; various topics

    • The Food Co-Op is in the second phase of its renovation.

    • The Rauner Library Blog has two posts (one, two) on a big scrapbook created by Francis Gilman Blake of the Class of 1908.

    • The Mirror (of The D) is doing a series of photos and descriptions of campus buildings, with some info drawn from the book.

    • A neat database gives information on all the memorials in London.

    • Old news: DCHCDS is being folded into DIHPCP (Valley News). The number of logotypes in the row (post) is reduced by one.

    • The Valley News reported that the Town is considering the creation of an affordable housing development.

    • The Trumbull-Nelson Newsletter (pdf) has an interesting history of the company, basically the Builders to the College, by Frank Barrett.

    • Brian Schott wrote a neat essay in the DAM about a wall painting in one of the East South Street houses demolished for South Block (pdf).

    • Long-time Valley News sports editor Don Mahler wrote that the one sports-related letter to the editor that made him laugh was a 1983 letter

      from a Dartmouth alum taking “newcomers to the Dartmouth scene” to task over the use of the term “homecoming.”

      According to the writer, “some clod started using the word just a few years ago.”

      “(A) large percentage of the Dartmouth alumni body, certainly prior to 1970 or thereabouts, never heard the word and when they do they associate it with cow colleges.”

      “Cow colleges”? I guess he meant those colleges with alphabet monikers like A&T, A&M and A&I — you know, institutions of lower learning, never to be confused with the Ivy League.

      He declared Dartmouth Night to be a great tradition that was being undermined by the increasing use of the word “homecoming.” And he also lamented that “fall houseparties” were gradually slipping from usage.

      Our correspondent revealed his true blue-blood colors in the last paragraph: “I may go down swinging on this, but I’m going to keep standing at the plate. … I’d rather work hard at teaching a clod a touch of class than let a drift to a common denominator prevail.”

      Thirty-one years later, we know that the old boy did go down, not just swinging but presumably with a stiff upper lip. These days, the Dartmouth alumni relations office puts out an annual calendar of events that includes a celebration of homecoming. I can’t recall anybody objecting to the bovine vulgarity of the event in recent years.

      Of course that alum was hyper-obnoxious, especially since he was directing his complaint at the VN, which can describe Dartmouth events using any terms it wants. But buried in the pointless snobbishness is an historical observation: the event known as “Homecoming” was not always called that. The college called it Dartmouth Night Weekend until recently. (It must be acknowledged that both Alumni Relations and the Registrar now call it Homecoming.)

    • The Rauner Blog has a post on some Wheelock documents.

    • The Valley News did a story and graphic on the history of the Dartmouth football uniform.

    • Beyer Blinder Belle has posted a new, larger depiction of the firm’s master plan for the college campus. Wow.

    • The Geisel magazine has an article on the Williamson.

    • Sometimes King’s College London is pointed to as evidence in the argument that Dartmouth need not drop the word “college” from its name. Recently, however, KCL took up a rebranding plan (Inside Higher Ed, Roar News story on proposed logo). The reason to change the name to King’s London, as quoted in the Times Higher Education, echoed concerns heard at Dartmouth:

      “However, our research conducted over the last 18 months with potential students, parents, staff, students and alumni, revealed that our current name was causing considerable confusion: is King’s a residential college, is it an academic college akin to the colleges of Oxbridge, or is it an educational institution of some other type such as a further education college?

      “Internationally, there was further misunderstanding because ‘college’ is not a widely understood term in many countries,” he added.

      The article in THE doesn’t actually say which of those three types of institutions KCL is, and the institution seems not to be any of them. Although it is one of two original colleges in the University of London, making it like an Oxbridge college, it is now a research university divided among nine schools of its own.

      In any case, the plan was controversial and was scrapped not very long after it was proposed (THE).