master planning

Neighborhood planning, other topics

November 19th, 2014  |  Published in 4 Currier, all news, Gilman, graphic design, Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., Heat Plant, Larson, Jens, master planning, Mt. Moosilauke, neighborhoods, north campus, other projects, preservation, publications, Ravine Lodge, Triangle House

  • In 4 Currier, the Dartmouth Entrepreneurial Network Innovation Center and New Venture Incubator is operating (NHBR, via Dartmouth Now).

  • The extensive renovation has ended and Triangle House is now open (Dartmouth Now).

  • Amidon Jewelers is closing its store on Main Street, The Dartmouth notes. Amidon has been in town since 1935.

  • The College is looking at using natural gas or another fuel in the Heat Plant in place of No. 6 heating oil (The Dartmouth). It’s not clear that this move will lead to a new heating plant on Dewey Field, but there is always the possibility.

  • From Dartmouth Now, “neighborhoods” get a timeline:

    The Board also discussed the ongoing planning and development of possible residential housing models that could be implemented beginning with the Class of 2019.

  • Dunc’s Mill, a Vermont rum distillery, displays on its building a rare matched set of Vermont windows (see the post here).

  • The Tucker Foundation is seeking comments on its split into religious and service groups (Dartmouth Now).

  • The Planner’s Blog has a post on induced demand for roads.

  • The Dartmouth has a general article on campus construction that says:

    Gilman Hall, the now-closed former home of the biology department and proposed location for the academic center, will remain vacant for the foreseeable future, Hogarty said. Though the College investigated potential uses for the building over the summer, it did not decide on an immediate course of action. While housing was considered as one option, this would have been too expensive.

    With Gilman on the road to weedy dereliction, somebody with FO&M needs to rescue those original lettered transom panels.

  • The Pine Park Association has a video of the construction of the new pedestrian bridge over Girl Brook.

  • Bruce at the Big Green Alert blog justifies his proposed name for the soon-to-be annual season-ending football game against Brown: The Tussle in the Woods.

  • There is some discussion of the Ravine Lodge demolition proposal at Views from the Top.

  • Waterfront New York: Images of the 1920s and ’30s is a new book of watercolor paintings by Aldren A. Watson, the Etna illustrator and writer who died in 2013 (Valley News, aldrenwatson.com). Watson might be familiar to readers from the trio of aerial sketches he did for The College on the Hill: A Dartmouth Chronicle (1965), precisely-delineated snapshots of Dartmouth in the 1770s, 1860s, and 1960s. The last of these is etched at a large scale on a glass partition in Six South.

  • There is a new football website (via Big Green Alert blog). In the Athletics > Ivy League section, the green “D” logo has mercifully shed its TM mark.

The inevitable demolition news

November 15th, 2014  |  Published in all news, Boathouses, cabins, Connecticut River, History, Larson, Jens, Ledyard Canoe Club, master planning, Memorial Field, Mt. Moosilauke, Outing Club, photos June 2005, preservation, Ravine Lodge

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.

Go Go Panarchy; other news

October 23rd, 2014  |  Published in 4 Currier, all news, Alumni Gym, Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., History, Hood, master planning, neighborhoods, other projects, preservation, societies

  • College Supplies, on Main Street, is closing (The Dartmouth, Valley News).

  • Panarchy is finally tackling fire-safety upgrades to its Greek Revival house (Valley News, The Dartmouth). The group has set up an Indiegogo campaign to raise money.

  • Construction inside 4 Currier has ended and the Innovation Center has opened (The Dartmouth, Dartmouth Now). Construction is also ending at Kappa Delta’s new house on Occom Ridge and at the Triangle House renovation project.

  • Valley Road in Hanover now has “suggestion lanes” for bicycle and foot traffic (The Dartmouth). Other noteworthy articles in The D cover the addition to the Food Co-Op and the Wilder Dam relicensing process.

  • At the September Trustees’ meeting, according to The Dartmouth,

    Interim Dean of the College Inge-Lise Ameer and campus planning vice president Lisa Hogarty gave a presentation on residential life concepts, including the neighborhood system, which would assign students to a residential cluster from the beginning of their time at Dartmouth similar to a house system.

    This new residential system is in “active planning,” Hanlon said. “It’s bold, it’s transformational and it’s also very complex.”

  • “The Board also approved the second-phase schematic design of the Hood Museum of Art project” (Dartmouth Now).

  • The rivening of the Tucker Foundation continues (The Dartmouth).

  • Watch some super aerial footage of the Dartmouth Night Bonfire (via Big Green Alert).

  • The Rauner Library Blog has a post on the Grid-Graph, the illuminated glass display board on which students reenacted away games for football fans in the west gym of Alumni Gym.

  • The Times has an interesting article on branding/visual identity/signage at Barnard College. The third photo shows a pair of carved limestone (?) cartouches on the front facade of the school’s main building. Designed by Charles Rich, the building somewhat foreshadowed the smaller Wilder Laboratory at Dartmouth, which substitutes oval windows for the cartouches.

  • The West Wheelock Charrette Report was presented to the Planning Board (minutes pdf). There were several comments about “cleaning up” the area.

  • Campus Planning & Facilities seems to have shifted its news output from its website to a newsletter called Behind the Green. From issue 1:3 (July 2014) (pdf) we learn that the old roof shingles of Webster Cottage have been replaced with shingles of Alaskan Yellow Cedar (a.k.a. Nootka Cypress), and that design is under way for landscape work carrying out elements of the Van Valkenburgh plan near Collis, Robinson, and the Gold Coast.

School of Grok

October 18th, 2014  |  Published in '53 Commons, all news, coat of arms, History, master planning, Med. School, north campus, other projects

The office of new Provost Carolyn Dever is launching two task forces, one of which is aimed at “evaluating the prospect of giving Dartmouth’s graduate and advanced studies programs a physical plant” (The Dartmouth of September 30; see also The Graduate Forum of October 3, The Dartmouth of October 7).

Dartmouth has operated a number of graduate programs for years. Most are attached to relevant undergraduate departments. Thus the creation of a freestanding school of graduate studies need not involve any expansion; it could be done as an administrative reorganization, and, in theory, it could even result in a streamlining of staff. Whether or not a grad studies building is a goal at the moment, however, a building seems likely. As far back as 2007 the unbuilt design (pdf page 9) for a freestanding Class of 1953 Commons included a Graduate Suite.

Maybe some part of the old hospital site is as good as any; maybe when Dana Library moves out of its temporary location in Home 57, that building could house the School of Graduate Studies. Maybe a new building for Dana could terminate the Berry Row axis and link the Medical School with the Graduate School, as the Murdough Center links Tuck and Thayer.

Of course all this growth became inevitable once the program/school adopted a coat of arms back in 2010.

Coat of arms for Graduate Studies at Dartmouth
Graduate Studies coat of arms, from Graduate Studies

Siting a new building for Thayer School

October 16th, 2014  |  Published in all news, Fairchild, MacLean ESC, master planning, Thayer School, Tuck 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 master play mystery

September 5th, 2014  |  Published in all news, Buchanan Hall, master planning, preservation, Tuck School

The BBB/MVVA master plan has not been presented to the public, but one small illustration from it has been published on the Web. Reading much into this one image is difficult. The image emphasizes a system of green circulation armatures; although it depicts several new buildings, it does not distinguish them from existing buildings.

Nevertheless some fairly significant proposals for new construction can be discerned. One of the most intriguing involves Tuck Drive, which curves gently uphill from the left:

Detail from Beyer Blinder Belle master plan for Dartmouth

Tuck Drive is simply cut off in the image; it dead-ends behind Buchanan instead of emerging from Webster’s Vale to join with Tuck Mall. (Here is a recent Bing aerial of the site.) Perhaps the blocking of Tuck Drive would not be much of a change. The upper end was already bollarded by 2010, a change presumably made when Fahey and McLane were built.

Where does the master plan have this Tuck Mall driveway leading, then? It goes to a parking lot. The broad, curving sidewalk and new lawn behind Buchanan appear to be level, bridging over the Vale.

Whether it is a small surface lot or an underground garage, this would not be an all-school parking area; it would serve the Tuck School. Indeed the green bridge with its broad path appear to link Buchanan to the current President’s House and the two or three new buildings shown nearby. It looks as if the designers are reviving the idea that the President’s House, whose address is technically 1 Tuck Drive, be made a part of the Tuck School. If an appropriate replacement for the executive mansion could be found, it would make a lot of sense.

College Cleaners demo, other items

September 3rd, 2014  |  Published in all news, Connecticut River, graphic design, Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., History, Indoor Practice Facility, Larson, Jens, master planning, Memorial Field, preservation, publications

  • Athletic Director Harry Sheehy interviewed in the Valley News:

    If you talked to our previous coaching staff, we were injured because we had to practice outside, but I don’t buy it. I would love to have an indoor facility so you could practice indoors for an hour and outdoors for an hour. I’m not saying the cold doesn’t put a stress on the body; I’m just saying that somehow we’ve had some (men’s lacrosse) success before and without an indoor facility.

    I don’t need one with a thousand bells and whistles. We need a functional space with an artificial surface. The problem is, it still costs you $20 million just to do that.

  • A Memorial Field bid package document (pdf) states that “[f]or the most part, with the exception of some small changes, this is the same project that was cancelled in 2008.”

  • Demolition of the College Cleaners building on Allen Street, where the cleaning business started more than 65 years ago, is going ahead. The building first appears on maps between 1912 and 1922, when it was used as a restaurant. The site will become a parking lot and, one hopes, eventually will be a site for a new commercial building. The Valley News article distinguishes Town-owned from privately-owned public parking; the sad examples of the lots at 2 or 6 West Wheelock, where proper businesses have belonged for decades, suggest that Town-owned lots suffer a certain inertia.

  • Yes, the TM symbol associated with the big green D on the new scoreboard is distracting. But is it also crass, or is it a necessity of college athletics and trademark law? It might be the former: None of the other Ivies feels the need to put such a big TM next to its logo on the league website.

  • A proposal: In order to reduce traffic on South Main Street and at the Inn Corner, the town should make South Main a one-way street and block through traffic other than buses:

    Plan of proposed one-way Main St., half closed to traffic

    The gray zones are areas newly freed up for parking. Some of the southern parking area could become a Town Square in front of the Municipal Building:

    Plan of proposed one-way Main St., half closed to traffic with town square

  • Google Street View says that this bench (Appalachian Trail? Memorial?) appeared at Lebanon and Crosby between 2009 and 2013:



  • Steve Smith has written Top 10 Natural Places to Visit in Hanover, New Hampshire: A Walking Guide (Valley News).

  • Football’s alternate uniforms were revealed on August 12 (Big Green Alert). BGA has a photo of “Stephen Dazzo modeling Dartmouth’s alternate gray pants and a helmet designed to fit the theme ‘Granite of New Hampshire.'”

  • There are some interesting details in the very detailed Wilder Dam relicensing preliminary application document of 2012 (pdf).

  • Another proposal: In order to save money, USPS should sell off its Main Street property and lease a cheaper and more efficient space downtown, perhaps in the Galleria or Hanover Park or even on Allen Street. (This might mean moving the postal sorting operation, with its tractor-trailers, to Route 120.) The college’s Real Estate Office or another developer could then rehabilitate all or part of the historic 1931 Post Office building as a commercial space and fill the vacant land around it with commercial or mixed-use construction. It seems so wasteful to maintain that truck parking lot in the middle of town, and the Post Office isn’t making the best use of its building, either.

  • The Valley News has stories on Lebanon’s sale of school buildings, one with interior photos of Larson’s former Junior High School and one with an exterior photo of the building.

—–

[Update 09.03.2014: Typo corrected, wording altered for clarity.]

In the archives of the Alumni Magazine

September 1st, 2014  |  Published in all news, Baker Library, graphic design, Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., History, Hop, the, Larson, Jens, master planning, other projects, Parkhurst Hall, preservation, publications, Rocky

Some fun things are to be found by rummaging indiscriminately in the new on-line archive:

Harrison’s first design for the Hop appeared in a remarkable illustrated article from 1957.[1] This is the boxy, pre-arcade version of the building. The Top of the Hop was to have a cylindrical glass-walled void running through its center, all the way from the roof to the theater lobby. This seems to have evolved into the modest Barrows Exhibition Rotunda at the building’s entrance.

Ray Nash wrote on the college seal in 1941.[2] Speaking of the seal, “Hanover’s best skylight… is found in Parkhurst Hall” according to a “best-of” list written in 1984.[3] The skylight, which depicted the seal, was removed during a interior renovation and seemed to have been lost by May of 2006. Was it ever returned?

An article on the Rockefeller Center included architectural commentary by designer Lo-Yi Chan.[4]

In the election of John Steel to the board of trustees, the alumni association counted its ballots on May 23, 1980. The board put off its vote of June 6, however, asking the association to investigate “any irregularities” in the campaign. On July 28 the association recommended action on the nomination, and the board elected Steel on August 16 — a delay of about ten weeks. He was seated at the board’s November meeting.[5]

George Hathorn wrote a well-illustrated article on “Unbuilt Dartmouth” in 1978.[6]

The master plan for Memorial Field appeared in a 1920 article.[7]

Noel Perrin wrote an observant 1974 photographic study of Hanover-area sprawl.[8]

—–

  1. “The Hopkins Center,” Dartmouth Alumni Magazine (May 1957), 17-21, 25.
  2. Ray Nash, “Rediscovering the College Seal,” Dartmouth Alumni Magazine (December 1941), 17-20.
  3. “Hanover’s Bests,” Dartmouth Alumni Magazine (December 1984), 42.
  4. Donald McNemar, “Rockefeller Center: The Ideal of Reflection and Action,” Dartmouth Alumni Magazine (June 1981), 30-33.
  5. Editor, “The College. Steel Elected,” Dartmouth Alumni Magazine (September 1980), 26. Compare Todd Zywicki, “History of Trustee Election Rules,” Dartmouth Review (6 October 2006), 2 (“In 1980 a man named John Steel ran as a petition candidate for trustee and was elected in a landslide. Efforts were made by the College and the board at the time to refuse to seat him and after protracted litigation, he finally prevailed.”).
  6. George Hathorn, “Unbuilt Dartmouth: Castles in the Clouds,” Dartmouth Alumni Magazine (May 1978), 29-33.
  7. James P. Richardson, “The Plans for Memorial Field,” Dartmouth Alumni Magazine (February 1920), 640-643.
  8. Noel Perrin, “The College in the Suburb,” Dartmouth Alumni Magazine (May 1974), 18-23.

A black hole telescope; other news

August 2nd, 2014  |  Published in all news, Baker Library, DHMC, Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., History, master planning, Memorial Field, Mt. Moosilauke, other projects, preservation, societies, Wilson Hall

  • An earlier post here expressed concern about the plaque added to the Orozco Room after the National Historic Landmark listing. Dartmouth Digital Orozco depicts the plaque, a very dense text panel, on what it calls the “National Historic Landmark Pillar” near the center of the room. The other pillar is labeled “Manton Pillar” and bears the nice stone plaque created earlier.

  • CRREL site manager Larry Danyluk, paraphrased in the minutes of a Planning Board meeting:

    Expansions planned include another wing of offices, a new cold room and, in partnership with the Smithsonian, a radio telescope for black hole research. The telescope will be installed for 2-3 years, then moved to Greenland. Ten to twelve people will be added to staff the telescope project.[1]

  • The Dartmouth has an article on student-made graffiti, murals, and decorative painting in society buildings.

  • The renovation of Home 37 by ADD Inc. as the temporary location of Dana library gets a mention in Architect, the AIA magazine. ADD Inc. is the firm of Fred Kramer ’77 (DAM class notes).

  • Kresge Library is turning 40.

  • The Rauner Blog has a post on George Ticknor and the Ticknor Room.

  • The Times has a story on an interesting project at Brown, the recreation of part of a 19th-century natural history museum. Dartmouth also gave away much of its own collection, but a lot of it went to the Montshire Museum. One wonders whether enough dinosaur skeletons and mounted fauna remain there to supply a project in Wilson Hall like the one at Brown.

  • The Dew Construction Corp newsletter for June 2013 (pdf) mentions the Heater Road Medical Office Building and the Dana Library project.

  • The Class of 1974 Bunkhouse at Moosilauke (“the 74tress”), designed by MacLay Architects, has been completed, according to a post at TimberHomes LLC. The default construction mode at Moosilauke has shifted from log (or, in the case of the older bunkhouses, what seems to be conventional balloon framing) to substantial post-and-beam timber framing. If the Ravine Lodge ends up needing to be replaced, will its replacement even be a log building? What wonders could TimberHomes accomplish if it were given the once-in-a-lifetime project of erecting a Ravine Lodge to last 500 years?

  • A resident of the Lyme Road/Richmond School area, commenting at a recent neighborhood planning party:

    There should be a bridge between I-91 and DHMC. That would divert a lot of through traffic away from our neighborhood.[2]

  • Will the architects of the West Stands replacement incorporate any quotations into the new concrete terraces or pediments? Whose woods these are I think I know.

—-

  1. Planning Board, minutes of meeting (4 June 2014), pdf, 5.
  2. Planning Board, minutes of meeting (4 June 2014), pdf, 2.

Will everyone still walk under the porte-cochere?

July 31st, 2014  |  Published in all news, Hanover Inn, Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., Hop, the, master planning, other projects

More details on the Inn’s end of the East Wheelock sidewalk:

The sidewalk will be pushed out 3.5′ from its current location. A higher grade pedestrian zone will be provided near the Inn garage entrance. Radisch said the design approach is to create a pedestrian plaza that is shared by cars. The pavement of the porte cochere will be either colored concrete or exposed aggregate. Pavement and pedestrian crossings will be at the same grade.[1]

The Appalachian Trail plaque in the sidewalk will be moved as well.

It does sound like a good plan, having the cars share the plane of the sidewalk, but one wonders whether pedestrians will follow the intended route. Seeing two cars just sitting under the existing porte-cochère, or two empty “travel” lanes, a lot of people might take the shortest route.

—-

  1. Planning Board, minutes of meeting (3 June 2014), pdf, 6.

Alas, Rivercrest

July 29th, 2014  |  Published in all news, Country Club, Dresden Vil./Rivercr., master planning, Sachem Village

Wolff Lyons’ expansive traditionalist neighborhood plan (a post here) for the redevelopment of Rivercrest, on hold for several years, will not be built when the land is finally developed:

Tim McNamara from the Dartmouth College Real Estate Office explained that the College was instrumental in the zoning change creating the GR-4 district. A Master Plan for a suburban village had been created for Rivercrest with 300 mixed type housing units. The project has been on hold due to the recession and wanting to be patient about the transport of TCE from CRREL.

The College will soon determine what the housing demand is considering faculty and graduate students. The Rivercrest project will be designed based on this demand. The current Master Plan is unlikely to be built. When the College finally initiates Rivercrest, it is unlikely to be built out quickly. Tim envisions many smaller phases. If it were put in the queue today for planning, construction would occur in 3- 5 years. The actual start depends on demand at Dartmouth, the availability of capital and the TCE situation.[1]

We also learn that “Sachem will be built out first as that housing is needed for graduate students. There are no plans for the golf course.”

—-

  1. Planning Board, minutes of meeting (4 June 2014), pdf, 5.

Kendal, sprawling onto the Chieftain property?

July 25th, 2014  |  Published in all news, Connecticut River, Dresden Vil./Rivercr., Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., master planning, other projects

Banwell Architects has a page noting their work with architects RLPS on the Kendal master plan.

In the image provided, a random scatter of foreground parking lots is ornamented by several identical new buildings. The designers are dealing with a lot of topography; but still, this design lacks the coherence or focus of the existing Kendal complex.

Bus stop construction begins; other items

July 21st, 2014  |  Published in 4 Currier, all news, Dartmouth Row, Green, the, Hanover Inn, Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., History, Hood, Hop, the, Larson, Jens, master planning, Memorial Field, other projects, preservation, societies

  • The Innovation Center in 4 Currier has opened (Dartmouth Now). The design appears to be by Truex Cullins, who did the original building.

  • A little film introduces Perdido, the new sculpture on East Wheelock.

  • The Alumni Magazine has put up its electronic archive of every issue since the October 1905 Dartmouth Bi-Monthly, edited by E.M. Hopkins.

  • The post here on the topic of the new bus stop at the Hop complained about the sidewalk in front of the Inn. It turns out that that area is going to be reworked as well (Dartmouth Now). The sidewalk is growing, according to DCREO associate director of real estate Tim McNamara:

    The planned changes to the sidewalk and surrounding areas will effectively create two lanes as well as smoothing out the frost-heaved sections of sidewalk.

    “At present, pedestrians walking down East Wheelock have to pass under the porte-cochère,” says McNamara. “We will relocate the sidewalk to the outside of the porte-cochère so that pedestrians will not conflict with cars and guests coming and going from the Inn.”

    Moving the curb line out beyond the street’s current shoulder will also allow expansion of the Inn’s outdoor dining.

  • The Hopkins Center’s iconic Moore Theatre facade is also getting new double-pane windows (Dartmouth Now) ahead of the planned expansion and renovation. The D has a photo. (The Planner’s Blog has a post on the project)

  • Lebanon Junior High (J.F. Larson) is being renovated and reused, in part as the Spark Community Center. Studio Nexus is working on the building.

  • Project VetCare has purchased the 1907 house at 80 Lebanon Street and plans to rent rooms to three or more student veterans (Valley News). It’s the brown bungalow at the center of this Bing bird’s-eye view.

  • More great aerials: the Shower Towers and Kiewit, showing the committed but incongruous Bradley Plaza, and a 1919 photo of the Green showing the big tent set up for the 150th anniversary celebration. Most intriguing are this aerial and this aerial of Dartmouth Hall on fire in 1935. That was the fire that led Larson to gut the 1906 building and insert new floors and interiors, and to put up the current belfry and the three front gables showing the notable years.

  • One is relieved to see the College Usher (Dean of Libraries Jeffrey Horrell) identified as such in a Commencement photo showing him carrying Lord Dartmouth’s Cup.

  • A tidbit from the biography of the late David McLaughlin, Dartmouth President from 1981 to 1987. On the elimination of fraternities and sororities:

    In hindsight, I am convinced that the wrong approach was taken. Having been in a unique position to restructure the fraternity system, I should[1] have been more decisive early in my presidency, during my “Honeymoon” period. Perhaps I could and should have eliminated the fraternities in their current form and redefined them — brought about some positive fundamental restructuring of the campus social system. Neither my predecessor nor my successors had such a golden opportunity, both being non-Dartmouth alumni and academics and, therefore, suspect from the outset, by alumni and students, as men having little, if any, use for the Greek system. But football-playing, fraternity-member David McLaughlin was a different story. Oh, the howling would have been long and loud, and many on the board would undoubtedly have opposed me, but I believe that I could have brought a majority of my fellow trustees along with me. What I should have said, quite emphatically, in that inaugural speech of mine was, “Dartmouth needs to dismantle fraternities as they exist today.”[2]

  • The Hood now has put up a page on the expansion, with no new info since June 11.

  • Memorial Field construction is set to begin November 17 and finish by September 1 (Planning Board minutes pdf).

—–

[Update 07.29.2014: Link to Planner’s Blog post added.]

[Update 07.22.2014: Link to photo of Hop windows added.]

—–

  1. David T. McLaughlin with Howard J. Coffin, Choices Made (Hanover, N.H.: Privately printed 2007), 135.
  2. David T. McLaughlin with Howard J. Coffin, Choices Made (Hanover, N.H.: Privately printed 2007), 136.

Report from the Radcliffe Observatory Quarter

July 14th, 2014  |  Published in all news, DHMC, History, Life Sciences Ctr., master planning, Med. School, north campus, other projects, preservation, Rollins Chapel

Several posts here over the past few years have commented on the redevelopment of what’s called the Radcliffe Observatory Quarter in Oxford, comparing it to Hanover’s own hospital district north of Maynard.

Rafael Viñoly Architects devised a 2008 master plan for the area that appears in an aerial view before the makeover:

  • The Oxford University Press building is visible at the right, outside the quarter.

  • That church opposite the Press (St. Paul’s) was a coffee shop/bar called FREVD that served as an example here in the Rollins Chapel reuse post.

  • Just beyond the church is the future site of the building of the Blavatnik School of Government (founded 2010, Wikipedia). Circle-in-a-square buildings do have a special history here, but even a person with some fondness for spaceship buildings could find something to quibble with in this project by Herzog & de Meuron.

Oxford Blavatnik site Meacham photo

Blavatnik site, with St. Paul’s at left

Oxford Blavatnik site Meacham photo

View of construction site through hoarding

Oxford Blavatnik site Meacham photo

View of site from west: Templeton Green College, with Observatory

The broad approach taken by the university as developer is interesting: there was archeology beforehand (Neolithic ring ditches!) and during construction there was an artist in residence and a set of public art presentations.

—–

[Update 07.20.2014: View through hoarding added. Thanks to Hugin for panoramic image software.]

The Hanover Mobility Hub is what it’s called

July 5th, 2014  |  Published in all news, Green, the, Hanover Inn, Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., Hood, Hop, the, master planning, other projects, preservation, Wilson Hall

The conceptual design by ORW, which won a design award from Vital Communities, shows a redesign and replacement of a group of features in front of the Hop: the pedestrian crossing, bus loading area, bus shelter, empty grass rectangle, etc. It will be a partly-federally funded Town project built on College land by an architect chosen by the College. Even though the original timeline aimed to finish the work in 2013 (Request for Qualifications pdf), it was not built then, but it looks like it was in design last fall (UVLSRPC minutes) and is out for bids now (Construction Data Company).

detail from ORW concept plan

Everything in the proposal is sensitive and unobtrusive, but one should note that this project will affect the appearance of the Hopkins Center. (In fact this will be one piece in the great parade of architectural interventions in the south side of the Green of 2012 through 2020.) During the warmer months, a dense block of trees here would hide several parts of the Hop, setting up the Moore Theatre as an independent pavilion — not necessarily a bad thing, and perhaps a good stopgap until we receive a full and true Hop addition, one that brings the building right up to the street.[1]

Paving

The Site Plan Concept by ORW (pdf page 4) is impressive. The most noticeable change might be the grove of trees. With a pea-gravel floor, this outdoor room screened by two ranks of trees arranged formally on axis with Wilson’s entrance (and a realigned set of Hop plaza steps) will be novel and interesting and civilized. This allee could be exquisitely beautiful in the winter with snow on the bare limbs and the tables.

The street improvements (bulbs, insular pedestrian refuge near the site of the former grassy median) are all important. The crosswalk has a note indicating that it is aligned with an axial view of Baker Library. One proposal is pretty subtle: the use of plaza paving materials (concrete pavers, say) in place of asphalt in the bus/dropoff zone. This is crucially important in reducing the perceived width of the street: Hanover is not that big, and it doesn’t need a five-lane street below the Green. Here’s hoping the paving proposal is realized. (Even if not, the plan will still remove the diagonal parking in front of the hop — good riddance.)

Maybe after this is built and enjoyed for a few years the Town will go further by raising the street level and bollarding off the plaza and the Green. The same thing should be done with the Inn’s porte-cochere and its garage ramp.[2]

Pavilion

One neat detail is a bit hidden: a little visitor’s information pavilion. In the site plan on page 4 it’s obscured by trees but is described as measuring 12 x 15 feet. On page 5 its side is shown as if seen from Wilson Hall.[3]

I imagine this pavilion helpfully blocking the wind in the winter but spending most of its time enclosing a few desultory racks of brochures for Quechee Gorge and Simon Pearce. It could replace the staffed, temporary kiosk that the Chamber of Commerce puts on the Green each summer [check]. But it could be much more: you can see its potential in the photo in the lower right part of page 3, the one showing the café tables and the menu board.

This pavilion could be a little coffee kiosk, a snack bar, or even a real bar, serving drinks out of a window.[4] Not quite the Tavern on the Green or even the Out of Town News in Cambridge, but certainly at least as good as a sandwich kiosk in Bryant Park.

——–

  1. If the Hopkins Center were less of a suburban arts island and more of a conventional urban building (see 7 Lebanon Street), there would be no need for a warming shelter here. The business end of the Hop — everything on this facade except for the theater entrance — would come right up to the street alongside the Inn, and it would provide plenty of commercial rental space for a newsstand or a coffee shop that catered to bus travelers.
  2. At the moment these two asphalt drives are intrusions of the street into the sidewalk, not small portions of the sidewalk opened up to cars. The paving is opposite what it should be (Street View). In both cases, the sidewalk paving should extend all the way down to the street’s edge, and the boundary line should be located there. The existing bollards and floor level/lack of curbing are appropriate, however.
  3. In the perspective view on page 6 the pavilion is a bit hard to read. It is the dark glass box whose roof is the same height as that of the seating area in the foreground. The tall glass box near the center appears to be a possible Hop addition. The document is from July of 2011.
  4. For that matter, couldn’t the Inn breach the eastern wall of its patio and start serving people who sit under the trees here?

It looks like dining halls are out

June 22nd, 2014  |  Published in all news, master planning, neighborhoods

The Valley News:

Hanlon reiterated his support for the creation at Dartmouth of a “house system” similar to those in existence at a majority of Ivy League colleges. That system, in which undergraduates have a stable affiliation with a residence hall where faculty are present, is aimed at “creating a greater variety of social options on campus,” he said. Dartmouth could create houses in existing residence buildings or clusters of such buildings, but without their own dining facilities, he said. The cost of the undertaking is currently being assessed by architects who recently visited the campus.[1]

What’s left to distinguish the new neighborhood from the Eighties cluster? Perhaps only a faculty residence, if that.

——

Ravine Lodge upgrade study; other news

May 25th, 2014  |  Published in all news, Alumni Gym, cabins, Hanover Inn, History, Hop, the, master planning, Mt. Moosilauke, other projects, Outing Club, preservation, societies

  • It does seem a little strange that Dartmouth is replacing the roof over the Karl Michael Pool in Alumni Gym (see The Dartmouth) so soon after the 2006 renovation. It turns out that the roof insulation failed some time ago, and the college sued the renovation architects and builders back in 2012 (see the order on preliminary motions pdf; the Union Leader article). The suit is ongoing.

  • Charles Collis has died at age 99 (The Dartmouth).

  • Dartbeat has a Q&A with dlandstudio architect Susannah Drake ’87.

  • Two items from the Planner’s Blog: New chairs with built-in writing tablets to replace the old ones in Dartmouth Hall, and a new paint scheme for the pedestrian refuge in the middle of Wheelock Street by the Hop. On the Planning Board agenda for June are a request to modify site plans for a renovation of the porte-cochere area of the Inn and a review of the site plan “for vehicular, pedestrian & bus stop improvements” in front of the Hop.

  • The new (replacement) Class of ’65 Bunkhouse at Moosilauke is being designed by Maclay Architects (prospectus pdf). Timber will come from the college wood at Corinth Vt. (Grant newsletter pdf). The same firm is evaluating the state of the Ravine Lodge itself in anticipation of extensive future work (The Dartmouth).

  • The Hill Winds Know Their Name (pdf) is a beautifully-produced booklet by the late Professor Wood about the college’s war memorials. One suggestion for the next edition of this valuable work involves the transcription of the Stanley Hill inscription on page 13:

    IT IS DEDICATED IN HIS NAME TO THE BRAVE AND CLEAN OF HIS BELOVED DARTMOUTH

    It should read:

    IT IS DEDICATED IN HIS NAME TO THE BRAVE AND CLEAN YOUNG MANHOOD OF HIS BELOVED DARTMOUTH

    (See the shower room plaque; see also Kenneth C. Cramer, “Dick Hall and His Friends,” Dartmouth College Library Bulletin (April 1992).)

  • Interesting examples of public or urban typography from Tobias Frere-Jones.

  • A Google aerial shows the preparation for the sorority construction on Occom Ridge, and an earlier Street View captures the OnTarget guy marking utilities on the sidewalk.

  • Who knew there were so many new senior societies? The official ORL page lists a couple “new” ones that have survived (Abaris, Griffin/Gryphon) along with several even newer ones (Andromeda, Chimera, Olympus, Order of the Sirens).

  • The new Hop entrance under the Inn’s Grand Ballroom (Street View) was labeled “Minary Conference Center” when it was finished last year (see the image at the DUSA page). Perhaps it makes sense, since that is the most direct route to the conference center. One of these days someone will build a real, direct, and prominent entrance to the Hopkins Center proper.

  • Remember John Flude, the London pawnbroker who had a large medal engraved and sent to the president of Dartmouth in 1786? (See Dick Hoefnagel, “John Flude’s Medal,” Dartmouth College Library Bulletin (November 1991).) Here’s his testimony in the Old Bailey regarding one James Smith, indicted for stealing on July 10, 1764 a gold ring from Flude’s shop:

    When he was gone, I opened the paper to look at my ring, and found I was deceived; I ran out, and happened to take the right way: I ran up Hart-street, and at the upper end I saw him; when I had been twenty or thirty yards in Monkwell-street, he run as hard as he could, and turned into Silver-street; I pursued him into the Castle and Faulcon yard: he stopped running, and was opening the paper to look at the ring: I got up to him, and laid hold of him, and said, my friend, you shall not drop the ring: I took hold of his hand, and led him to the first public house I came to, and desired Mr. Hayns, who was there, to open the prisoner’s hand; he did, and there I took out my ring: bringing him back in Monkwell-street, he desired I would not take hold of his coat to expose him, saying, he had a great family; I let go his coat: when we came to the corner of Hart-street, he endeavoured to escape, and ran as hard as he could; and we took him again in Wood-street.

    Smith was found guilty of stealing.

  • A new master plan for CRREL

    May 23rd, 2014  |  Published in all news, Connecticut River, Dresden Vil./Rivercr., Hanover/Leb./Nor'ch., master planning, other projects, preservation

    This is impressive and fairly unexpected: an Oregon firm called The Urban Collaborative has helped design a master plan and building code for CRREL.

    Here’s a recent aerial of the site from Google Maps:

    Master planning started back in 2010 (see Public Works Digest pdf). The Army bought from Dartmouth the bulk of the land beneath its labs during 2012 (post).

    The development next door to the north of CRREL is Rivercrest, which is owned by the college and has a thoughtful New Urbanist master plan of its own (post). Progress on that redevelopment has been halted for several years, and the plan lives only on paper.

    Perhaps the two institutions can jointly reduce the suburbanity of the area by connecting each of their grids to the other. The CRREL plan even depicts, perhaps optimistically, a grand boulevard running west from Lyme Road toward the river, lined on one side with a new CRREL signature building and on the other with commercial blocks not previously shown in the Rivercrest plan. (Connections to Kendal to the north are probably too much to ask, however.)