Space Use

  • From Steel to Software: Repurposing an Industrial Building for Education


    Universities typically build or acquire new academic space sparingly, after long deliberation. When changing economic conditions dropped a whole campus into Lehigh University’s lap, the challenge has been to use that space in ways that support today’s education. Industrial giant Bethlehem Steel didn’t go formally bankrupt until 2001, but the writing was on the wall as early as 1987, when the company sold the majority of its “Mountaintop” research facility to Lehigh, which has since acquired two more buildings there, including Mountaintop C. That massive building’s three high bays attached to a curved bank of offices, is now home to student-driven projects in an environment that seeks to keep elements of the industrial feel and keep large bays as relatively rough, unfinished space.

  • Space Management Tools Are Key to Strategic Facility Planning


    While the term “strategic facility planning” is often used generically to refer to a variety of initiatives, it is actually a unique discipline with a distinct meaning, says Debora Hankinson, architect and director of Strategic Facility Planning at CRB Consulting. As an end product, a strategic facility plan (SFP) is the overarching document that sets the direction for all further planning activities, from master (or campus) planning to the tactical steps of capital projects planning, move management, and deferred maintenance planning.

  • Bringing a Mid-Century Engineering Facility into the 21st Century


    The College of Engineering, one of 15 colleges and schools at Cornell University, has 21 percent of the undergraduate population, 32 percent of the graduate population, and 10 percent of the square footage of the campus. As part of the college master plan, Upson Hall, originally built in the 1950s, and one of the largest buildings on the engineering quad, was in line for modernization. The plan called for improving energy efficiency, providing student and faculty collaborative space, and creating wet, hybrid, nano-, bio-, and chemical engineering labs. Since the building is well-located and structurally sound, with good floor-to-floor heights for labs, the decision was to renovate the existing structure, rather than undertake new construction. The project, a complete gut and renovation of the 160,000-gsf building, scheduled in two approximately year-long phases, was completed in August 2017.

  • Purdue University Combines Classroom and Library Space to Promote Active Learning


    Purdue University’s new 178,000-sf Wilmeth Active Learning Center (WALC) contains seven different types of classrooms that are so integrated into the Library of Engineering and Science that “at times, you almost can’t tell the difference between them,” says Nanette Andersson, director of library

  • Five Key Design Elements of Successful STEM Facilities


    After nearly a decade of gathering data about what makes a STEM facility competitive and attractive to students and faculty, EYP Architecture & Engineering has distilled five features that are key to radically redesigning successful STEM facilities. Survey results obtained from more than 1,500 students and 330 faculty members at six universities reveal the characteristics in a facility’s design that help make the institution more competitive, enhance the effectiveness of science and engineering teaching, advance faculty and student research, increase the students’ interest in the STEM disciplines, and promote welcoming places to learn, study, and interact.

  • Academic Medicine Adopts the “Workplace of the Future”


    Anyone who has ever set foot in a hospital knows the scene: doctors, nurses, residents, and interns huddling in the hallway discussing a patient’s care. For any number of reasons, that is not the best way to confer, but traditional academic medical centers offer few alternatives. The situation is exacerbated by the increase in adjunct faculty who lack even scattered departmental resources like office space. At the same time, millennials are entering academic medicine with even higher expectations—of greater collaboration, pervasive technology, and continuous connectivity.

  • London Health Sciences Centre Utilizes Honeywell Vector Space Sense


    London Health Sciences Centre is utilizing Honeywell Vector Space Sense to optimize facility utilization and reduce operational costs.

  • Making an Old Science Building Relevant Again


    Renovating an old science complex can be a cost-effective way to transform a 1970s relic into an education facility for the 21st century. The Gant Science Complex, built between 1970 and 1974 on the Storrs campus of the University of Connecticut, is big—285,000 sf—but outdated and environmentally inefficient, with an R value in the single digits. It also reflects old-fashioned science teaching and research methods, making it hard to enable the kind of collaborative learning used today.

  • Converting a New York Office Building Into a Lab


    It started, not with a budget or a space, but with an idea. Today, that idea has become seven stories of collaborative lab space for cutting-edge genomic research, called the New York Genome Center (NYGC).

  • Allen Institute’s Workplace Design for High-Throughput Neuroscience Research


    To work effectively with huge amounts of complex research data requires not just computational efficiencies, but team-centered facility design. The Allen Institute’s new 270,000-sf Seattle facility implements an innovative floor plan to integrate lab space, office space, meeting space, natural lighting, air flow—and most importantly, movement of people. “What we have done with our new research building is to take the basic research model and scale it up to a more team-oriented environment,” says Paul Wohnoutka, senior director of operations. And it supports this new environment with several inventive energy-saving mechanical systems.