Details on the new road to the Thayer & CS building

The BBB West End Master Plan (super image from BBB site; see also the Campus Services project page, written by BBB) turns out to be more than a schematic design. The meandering suburban business-park road is going to be built:

Another change will be the removal of Engineering Drive, which runs from West Wheelock Street to the Cummings lot. A new roadway, called West Access Road, will be constructed to provide access to the parking garage and Thayer loading facility as well as limited access to the West End Circle. A now-closed portion of Old Tuck Drive, which originates just above the swim docks and the Ledyard parking lot, will be reopened and will connect the roadway to Tuck Mall, pending town approval.11. Susan J. Boutwell, “Integrating Engineering, Computer Science, Entrepreneurship,” Dartmouth News (28 March 2018).

The project page for the Thayer/CS building provides more detail: “Engineering Drive will close, and a new access road will be constructed specifically to provide access to the parking garage and Thayer loading docks. Old Tuck Drive will be restored and reopened to support one-way traffic heading from west to east.”

Maybe the site conditions (steep slopes, existing buildings) require the endearingly-named West Access Road to look the way it does. After all, Tuck Drive22. Please, let’s stop calling it Old Tuck Drive. The word “Old” seems to have been added to the name of Tuck Drive to distinguish the short branch of the road that was eliminated by Fahey-McLane. That was a dozen years ago. There is no need to keep using the word. is a curving, naturalistic auto road. Yet one hopes that the new road will respect urban principles by reinforcing campus spaces.

One also hopes that the West Access Road will be reconnected to Tuck Mall once construction of the building is completed: that would seem to be the reason for the two-level pedestrian bridge that will join the building to the McLean ESC.

From the Dartmouth News article: “Construction is expected to start early next year on a three-level underground parking and loading facility, which will sit below the four-floor education portion of the building.” In the map that accompanies the article, the entrance to that subterranean lair underground garage appears just off the southwest corner of the new building. Last fall, the project page included a view of the building’s south facade from which is taken this detail showing the intriguing, grottolike entrance:

Notes   [ + ]

1. 1. Susan J. Boutwell, “Integrating Engineering, Computer Science, Entrepreneurship,” Dartmouth News (28 March 2018).
2. 2. Please, let’s stop calling it Old Tuck Drive. The word “Old” seems to have been added to the name of Tuck Drive to distinguish the short branch of the road that was eliminated by Fahey-McLane. That was a dozen years ago. There is no need to keep using the word.

Ledyard Canoe Club demo ahead

  • A campus construction update has a few details on the soccer pavilion expansion out at Burnham Field.

  • The Valley News reports that the new Dartmouth Coach bus station is opening in Lebanon.

  • An architect has been named for the Ledyard Canoe Club replacement. The historic clubhouse will be demolished and a new building built in its place by Charney Architects of New Haven.

  • A newsletter last month described the installation of a solar array at ground level on Berry Row.

  • The Moosilauke Ravine Lodge replacement (project page) is going ahead, and one can’t help but worry about the success of its central feature, the great stone fireplace-staircase (HearthStair?). Will it be plausible as a work of masonry, a little bit of Machu Picchu in the White Mountains? Or will it read as Formstone, with no visible means of support?

  • An item on memorializing the Lodge mentions some interesting digital projects and quotes OPO Director Dan Nelson: “Memorabilia will be saved, safely stored, and reinstalled; interior log elements will be reused; timbers that can’t be reused in construction will be sawn into planks for wall paneling.”

  • “Work is underway … planning for future renovation of the Hopkins Center” (news release; see also the story in The D).

  • “Also in the future is consideration of the north end of campus, focusing on the demolition of Gilman Hall — and creation of green space in its place” (The D). Let’s hope that this is a way of saying the Gilman site will not become a parking lot.

  • “— coupled with the complete renovation of Dana Hall for faculty use” (The D). Interesting — wasn’t the library moved out because Dana was to be demolished? Is that move now looking like a mistake, or would the renovation have required the building to be emptied anyway? Whatever the case, it’s good to hear that Dana is being renovated. It seems like an underappreciated building that might have some merit to it, some endearing features. The small size and the scale of the building are appealing.

  • The Rauner Blog has a post on the Surveyor General of the His Majesty’s Woods during the 1740s. It is worth noting that John Wentworth later became Surveyor General, and Eleazar Wheelock was accused of illegally harvesting pines marked with the King’s broad arrow.

  • Dartmouth is building a timber-framed pavilion at the Organic Farm to shelter a wood-fired pizza oven (Planning Board minutes 6 September 2016 pdf).

  • Dartmouth Engineer Magazine has a long article on the Williamson Translational Research Building by The Map Thief author Michael Blanding.

  • The D has an article about the end of football game broadcasts on campus radio; this year the football team switched to 94.5 ESPN. Dartmouth licensed athletic multimedia rights to Learfield Sports late last year. Learfield created Big Green Sports Properties to handle “all corporate sponsorship endeavors for the Big Green, including venue signage, promotions, radio advertising and ads on” (new general manager announcement).

  • Mad River Glen ski area in Vermont is the only ski area on the National Register (history, NR nomination form pdf).

Planning the western part of campus

In September the college released a framework plan for potential construction around the professional schools (news release, story in The D). The plan, by Beyer Blinder Belle, elaborates on that firm’s earlier master plan for the campus.

The plan shows several future buildings. One is the upcoming Thayer School/Computer Science building, on the site of the Thayer parking lot (new images released). Another is the Irving Institute building in front of the Murdough Center (some details released). The designer of the Irving Institute is KPMB Architects, a Canadian firm: the school’s press release notes that each of the firm’s three partners is a member or officer of the Order of Canada. The plan also shows the demolition of the final two River Cluster dormitories, although the school has not selected a site for the replacement beds yet.

It is good to hear that the planning involves the “consideration of the aesthetics of future buildings and improvements to signage.” The future buildings depicted in the plan image do seem to perpetuate the oddly suburban bias noted in the original BBB master plan, however.

Lisa Hogarty, at the time the Vice President of Campus Planning (The D), said that “This plan creates a route from the Green to the river and adds new community green space.” The new route to the River is shown in the illustration and includes a ped-bike bridge over the cemetery. The “new community green space” is presumably an improvement of the existing “Whittemore Green” behind Thayer School. Some work has been done here, but it still feels a bit like leftover space, the grassy area in the middle of the asphalt turnaround.

Computer Science Department to move to new Thayer School building

Google Street View

rendering of new Thayer School building from Behind the Green Newsletter 2 March 2016

The new building is on the left. Image from Behind the Green newsletter.

The Thayer School of Engineering is planning to expand its faculty, students, and program. They are working closely with our Planning, Design & Construction Office to design a building that will accommodate this growth. The project is being developed in partnership with the Computer Science department and will therefore accommodate the relocation of that department, promoting interaction and collaboration between Thayer and CS, and with Tuck as well. The proposed new building is located south of the Maclean Engineering Sciences Center on the west end of the Dartmouth campus.

That from the Campus Services newsletter.1”A Sampling of Capital Projects Underway,” Behind the Green (2 March 2016) pdf.

The building takes its cues from the successful MacLean ESC next door. It looks as if it will line up directly with the portico of Tuck Hall.

The building also carries on the Thayer tradition of erecting additions rather than freestanding buildings. This is contrary to the two most recent master plans for this area. The road seems to be rerouted at least; will the connection to the River Cluster be eliminated completely?

And who will take over Sudikoff once CS leaves?

The newsletter also has a small rendering of the upcoming Indoor Practice Facility.


Notes   [ + ]

1. ”A Sampling of Capital Projects Underway,” Behind the Green (2 March 2016) pdf.

Thayer new building details

Thayer School news from the Valley News:

In 2017, administrators hope to break ground on a new building for the Thayer School of Engineering, located near the Tuck School of Business at the western end of campus.

Joseph Helble, dean of the Thayer School, said the expansion would help to accommodate rising numbers of students and faculty, as well as increased need for lab and office space.

“Our undergraduate enrollments have grown tremendously, roughly doubling over the past 5 years, so we are in need of more classroom space, including ‘project labs’ where students work on open-ended, hands-on design projects, usually in teams,” he said in an email Sunday.

The new building would be built in place of the parking lot south of the Thayer complex, according to Hogarty, who said the cost of the project had not been fixed but was planned to come entirely through donations.

Siting a new building for Thayer School

The Dartmouth reports that Wilson Architects is “exploring potential designs and locations” for a new Thayer School building:

The parking lot is the most obvious site, Helble said, though it would create a need for another parking facility elsewhere.

The firm will present its report in January. Wilson Architects, of Boston, has worked on a design for the renovation of Fairchild Hall.

A snippet of a 2004-era Thayer School master plan

The Koetter | Kim & Associates website includes an intriguing sketch, of which this is an excerpt:

Thayer School master plan by Koetter Kim ca. 2004

Ca. 2004 Thayer School master plan by Koetter Kim

Note the expansion of Thayer School all the way down Thayer Drive to West Wheelock Street, giving a “public” face to engineering (or business, for that matter) for the first time. Bold! Although the scale of the buildings in the image might not be the most appropriate, this would be a better use of the vacant land than what exists.

Source: Koetter | Kim & Associates > Projects > Projects List > MacLean Engineering Sciences Center > fourth image.

“Whittemore Green” as a name

As the irregular grassy plot in front of the River Cluster becomes better defined and and is transformed into a front door to the Tuck School (through the school’s Whittemore Hall), the space needs a name.

Landscape architects Saucier & Flynn have mentioned “Whittemore Green” in town planning meetings (pdf).

[Update 11.17.2012: Broken link to 11 July 2006 minutes removed.]

MacLean ESC

More images of the MacLean Engineering Sciences Center are on line.   This building is big.   An interesting little entry courtyard with gateposts that was not noticeable in earlier views shows up in a new view and is an almost exact analogue of the larger windswept space on the other side of the Thayer School, where it joins Murdough.   This one looks to be more effective.

Article on construction

This month’s Dartmouth Life has an overview of the nine largest projects underway, with images of several of them.   Two that have received little press lately but seem to get the go-ahead here are the Visual Arts Center on Lebanon Street (Machado and Silvetti) and the Tuck School dormitory/classroom complex that sounds bigger than when first announced:

The facility will consist of three connected buildings: the east and west residential buildings, and the central classroom and learning bulding.

That facility will be connected to the existing Tuck complex and designed by the firm that designed Tuck’s most recent addition of Whittemore Hall [more], Goody Clancy.

[Update 11.10.2012: Broken link to news article replaced, broken links to Goody Clancy pages fixed.]