A statue of Fred Harris? And other tidbits

  • Sasaki Associates now has a page for its House Centers “pilot” program. This SCUP article has a “housing swarm” image that Sasaki created for Dartmouth. A Valley News article states that the college “estimated it will cost $12.8 million to build professors’ residences and temporary centers for Dartmouth’s Undergraduate House Communities program.” But those have already been built. Presumably that estimate refers to completed construction. Any future, permanent versions of those buildings will cost a lot more than $13 million.

  • BBB has updated its page on the campus master plan to include a large version of that plan, an image of the West End plan (Green to Blue), and — this is new — a schematic perspective rendering of the cemetery bridge, which we can call Fletcher Viaduct.

  • This Valley News article notes Kendal’s interest in building to the south on Rivercrest land and leaving the Chieftain land for recreation (rowing).

  • Sir John Soane’s Museum in London has a computer model of the museum on line.

  • The architects have completed a design for the Irving Institute (Valley News).

  • The Dartmouth has an article on the success of the Town fence in front of Collis in reducing jaywalking.

  • The Hood has a brochure on public art on campus. The Class of 1965 has proposed to erect a statue of DOC founder Fred Harris in front of Robinson Hall. The campus architecture committee is considering the idea, according to the ’65 newsletter.

  • A bit of biography on David Hooke, who’s at the center of the new Moosilauke Ravine Lodge.

  • Dartmouth will play Brown at football in Fenway Park on November 10, Big Green Alert reports. Wild.

  • The Rauner Library Blog has a post about the Charter.

  • Kresge Library in Fairchild has turned 40 years old.

  • This Times editorial contains footnotes. Kinda neat, but also showy: if footnotes are needed here, why not everywhere? Or if the paper is to be relied on generally, why include notes here?

  • Big Green Alert points out the new use of the Lone Pine logo by the Co-Op. First impression? The trad typeface clashes with the fat Modernism of the pine. The use of the athletics nickname BIG GREEN in this seal-like, college-wide institutional device is also weird.

  • A Proliferation of Canes. Photos of the most recent Commencement show students carrying many strange, new-ish canes, most presumably representing senior societies. They feature a snake wrapped around a Native American arrow; a bearded old man; the domed main body of Shattuck Observatory (clever!); a snake clutching an apple in its mouth; a huge phoenix (for Phoenix, obviously — is that cast resin or something?); a tail, perhaps belonging to a whale?; and a three-dimensional stylization of the stylized Lone Pine symbol (also a metal globe).

  • Two interesting new-ish concepts: literary geography and forensic architecture.


Image of new Ledyard; selecting Ravine Lodge timbers


Co-Op Food Store in Centerra

———

11.28.2016 update: DEN project page link added.


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 DartmouthSports.com” (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).


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.

Famous for Fine Food: New Lodge images

In the “Giving” part of its website, the college has posted a new page for the replacement Moosilauke Ravine Lodge (thanks Rick). The page includes some new renderings, a site plan (showing Benton and McKenny cabins as slated for replacement), and most notably a video flythrough of the future Lodge.

These illustrations are in addition to the watercolors released earlier.

The building’s somewhat jumbled massing and the layering of its roofs of varied pitches give the impression of accretion over time. There are many traditional elements, including the post-and-beam construction of heavy logs, but the building is unmistakeably Modernist.

Pulling back the basement wall on the downhill side, leaving just the stone piers, reduces the bulk of the building and adds to its elemental, primitive character. One wonders where all the stone will come from; this building will require a lot of stone.

The side-gabled roof of the lower porch, with one of its planes draining back toward the face of the building, seems a bit odd. (This at :51 in the video.) Is this traditional? Is it because this roof must support the big vertical members above? The form of the roof almost implies that this colonnade started as a freestanding covered walkway.

The heavy landscaping for the amphitheater might be a little precious. The outdoor pizza oven sounds like fun, but is not very characteristic of this place. Maybe it will become a part of a new Dartmouth tradition.

Conceiving of the multistory interior chimney as a great stone tower is a good idea. But will it be weird to give this tower so much heft upstairs while it rests on relatively slim pillars downstairs? Will visitors who go “inside” the chimney downstairs feel like they are about to be crushed? The log beams in the ceiling could not possibly hold up the boulders above; will there be any convincing trabeation to create a roof? The bookshelves occupying an Inca ruin downstairs look great; this is more of a library than one would expect.


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).


Moosilauke schematic design

The new project page for the Ravine Lodge replacement links to a pdf of the schematic design.

The new design seems to recognize that the building’s “rear” facade, which faces away from the road, is its most prominent side.

Within the dining room is a great cairn-like chimney. Projecting from two sides of the chimney is a Swiss-Family-Robinson style cantilevered balcony or mezzanine. The stair to reach this mezzanine is located inside the chimney. It’s not clear how convincing the fireplace will be…


Newsilauke Ravine Lodge

The college has released four watercolor sketches of the future Ravine Lodge replacement (see also the accompanying Dartmouth Now announcement; the Valley News has a story). The building depicted looks similar to the one that was shown in the sketch posted here back in November 2014.

As is always said, although the demolition is regrettable, if the Lodge is to be replaced, this looks like a good replacement. The designers have taken care to depict a number of existing signs and other decorative elements. The stone foundations and footings should be more attractive and characteristic of Mt. Moosilauke than the current 1939 concrete walls. The massive stone mountain of a chimney structure looks like it could be interesting.


Moosilauke demo official; other items

  • Dartmouth Now reports in “House Professors Named to Residential Communities“:

    The house professors will each serve a four-year term beginning July 1, 2015, and will move into on-campus residences near their respective house communities the following summer.

    In fact, other than the current East Wheelock professor, who will continue, none of the professors has been publicly named to a particular residential community. See also The Dartmouth.

  • A new sport to try: the primitive biathlon (a href=”http://www.vnews.com/home/16288958-95/a-snowback-throwback-biathlons-receive-a-retro-makeover”>Valley News).

  • The Food Co-Op has posted a video of the renovation and addition project as it stood in March.

  • The Rauner Library Blog has a post on the remarkable collections of digital photos that are coming on line. Among the topical Photo Files:

    As of this post, approximately 34,000 images representing topics through “Lacrosse, Womens” are available.

  • Charles Gibson Design did print design and logo and stationery for the Lebanon landscape architecture firm of Saucier & Flynn.

  • The Dartmouth reports that the trustees have finally decided to replace both the Moosilauke Ravine Lodge and the Ledyard Canoe Club clubhouse. Although the article uses the word “rebuild” several times, the buildings are not going to be carefully dismantled and put back together like the Ise Jingu grand shrine (Smithsonian mag), and they will not be replaced with replicas as Dartmouth Hall was. Each one will be demolished and have a novel building designed by Maclay Architects put up in its place. Given the past work of that firm and collaborator TimberHomes LLC, the timber-framing company co-founded by D.O.C. historian David Hooke, the results should be excellent. Built of posts and beams instead of stacked logs, a new Ravine Lodge could really be “an unlikely cathedral,” as the film calls it.

  • Dartmouth Now reports that the William Jewett Tucker Foundation is splitting into the Dartmouth Center for Service, so named for the time being, and the William Jewett Tucker Center. The endowment funds whose donors are no longer living will be split evenly between the two new foundations.

  • The football team has unveiled its new black uniforms; Big Green Alert has photos.

  • With the 250th anniversary of the charter grant approaching on December 13, 2019, the newly-admitted Class of 2019 is being called the Anniversary Class (see The Dartmouth).


    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/.

    Neighborhood planning, other topics

    • 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

    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.


    How long before the Ravine Lodge will be replaced?

    Back in 2008 this site noted with suspicion the talk of the possible demolition and replacement of the Ravine Lodge.

    A reading the 2010 edition of the Moosilauke Land Management Plan (pdf) is reassuring, however. While concerned, the folks in charge seem to be the last ones who would want to get rid of the building. From page 24 of the plan:

    In 2005, the Moosilauke Advisory Committee and Outdoor Programs began discussing the replacement of the Ravine Lodge, because of maintenance issues and because the building was felt to be not sufficient for existing needs. In the fall of 2008, the College administration decided that, for the foreseeable future (at least five years) it does not envision reconstruction of the Ravine Lodge. The existing main building will be maintained as it long as it can safely be done, and rotten logs will be replaced, as part of the College operating budget through the Facilities Operations & Maintenance department (FO&M).

    However, concerns about sufficiency of facilities continue.

    That paragraph concludes with a warning of “the significant possibility of replacement of the Lodge in the not-too-distant future.”

    When a dinner crowd can no longer be seated safely, or when a weakened log can only be replaced at great expense, how should the replacement Ravine Lodge look?

    The recent Moosilauke practice has been to build excellent buildings with timber frames, but one could argue that the Ravine Lodge simply must be a log cabin. Does New Hampshire still have forests that can supply big logs economically? I have no idea. Could a sustainable harvest in the Grant provide the right timber? This could be the perfect time to play out Gregory Bateson’s “New College roof beam” story.1

    The Ravine Lodge is famous for its collection of cast-off trail signs and other jetsam, and all of this would go to the replacement. Some of the original logs would be incorporated as well. Maybe the new lodge could have a foundation of granite instead of concrete. And the upgrades would be irresistable: it could have a high-capacity septic system, dedicated Croo quarters, a modern kitchen, an accessible elevator, and all the infrastructure the current lodge lacks. Maybe its dining room would be able to seat 125 instead of 85.

    If fire safety is the main concern, could the old lodge be saved if its program were reduced drastically? Build the grand new lodge next door and turn the old lodge into a spacious but relatively little-used visitor center, bunkhouse, or storage building.

    ——

    1. As told by Stuart Brand, William McDonough, and others, the story is that there were no sufficiently-large oak trees on the market in all of England when the ancient beams in the hall of New College, Oxford finally needed replacement. The college head mentioned this to the college forester, and he replied, “we were wondering when you were going to ask about those trees.” It turns out that the forester and his predecessors through the centuries had been maintaining a stand of oaks specifically for the replacement of the hall roof. The story is mythical, of course, but it does seem to be based on real events, since the hall roof was replaced during the 1860s using oaks from college forests (Snopes quote from now-unavailable New College trivia page).

    The Class of 1974 Bunkhouse

    William Maclay Architects, creators of the master plan for the Organic Farm, have designed the Class of 1974 Bunkhouse at the Ravine Lodge. Timberhomes LLC is building the bunkhouse. The class will present it at their 40-year reunion next year. The construction site is visible north of the Lodge in this recent Google aerial:


    The Ravine Lodge really seems to be evolving into a little village, less a singular outpost than a summer camp.


    A brief history of DOC Trips

    The Rauner Library Blog has a nicely-illustrated set of posts on the first Freshman Trip in 1935, Trips during WWII, and Trips in the present. The program is celebrating its 75th anniversary.

    Robin Meyers created a time-lapse video of scenes at the Moosilauke Ravine Lodge, focusing on a feed and square dance (via Dartmouth College Planning).


    Historic Moosilauke Ravine Lodge under demolition threat

    The Moosilauke Advisory Committee recommends that Dartmouth demolish the historic Moosilauke Ravine Lodge (Richard Butterfield, 1938-39) near Warren, New Hampshire.

    The article on the Committee’s recommendation in The Dartmouth does not suggest that the Committee has consulted with an accredited preservation architect, or an architect who is familiar with historic log buildings. The reasons given for demolishing Dartmouth’s most unusual and most sustainable building are not yet very convincing:

    Reason   ::   Typical solution
    logs cracking   ::   seal them
    logs rotting   ::   replace them
    current building codes   ::   upgrade/overlook – most old buildings fail
    not large enough   ::   add on by extending the Great Hall

    The idea that the building was “built to last 50 years” is especially insidious because every building has such a number. No one in 1938 planned for Moosilauke to be demolished in 1988 any more those who built Moore or Berry in 1998 planned to have it torn down in 2048. A “lifetime” number exists for every building and simply describes the period after which significant elements will need replacement. Swapping out logs or replacing a roof is nothing a competent construction crew cannot handle.

    Dartmouth should not let the cost of proper maintenance justify destruction, even if an historic log building might cost a bit more to maintain than the cheap imitation that would replace it. The Lodge was built by volunteers and low-paid local loggers, during the Depression, which means that Dartmouth has been enjoying the savings of a low initial purchase price for 70 years. A little extra expense today would be well justified.

    Destroying the Ravine Lodge would also waste all of the energy the building embodies, and by rights it should prevent any replacement from claiming to be “green.” The Lodge was constructed using sustainable local timber hauled by horses. All of its systems are indefinitely replaceable and will not tie up valuable metals or harmful chemicals in landfills when they are thrown away after failing suddenly at the end of their useful lives, as the parts of a new building will do.

    ravine lodge

    The college that is gearing up to celebrate the centennial of its Outing Club, that is sincerely dedicated to meeting voluntary “green” regulations, and that produces graduates such as William McDonough should be embarrassed to consider destroying the Moosilauke Ravine Lodge. Just as with any other National-Register eligible building, if parts of it are broken, they need to be fixed. Before any demolition takes place, I’d hope that Dartmouth justify such a decision by reporting no that federal and state historic preservation laws will be implicated; that a certified preservation architect with log building experience has written off the building; and that the replacement will not seek any kind of LEED certification.

    —–
    [Update 01.13.2013: Broken link to McDonough removed.]
    [Update 11.17.2012: Broken links to McDonough and image fixed.]