Smith Campus Center Receives BSA Education Facility Design Citation

The Richard A. & Susan F. Smith Campus Center was recognized at the BSA Awards Gala on January 23rd with a citation with Education Facilities Design.

[stblockquote title=”” top_left=”” author=””]This is what adaptive reuse should be. A great but difficult Sert building is transformed by warm, welcoming interior spaces and an inviting ground level that gives way to the street and gracefully receives visitors. The student center is a true hub for this urban university’s extended community and its visitors. – Jury Comments[/stblockquote]

Thank you to the Boston Society of Architects and members of the jury for recognizing this transformative higher education project!

Vote for the Harleston Parker People’s Choice Award

The Richard A. & Susan F. Smith Campus Center is a finalist for the Harleston Parker People’s Choice Award!

Each year, the BSA selects one building to receive the Harleston Parker Medal, recognizing it as “the single most beautiful building or other structure” built in the metropolitan Boston area. All Harleston Parker Medal finalists are also finalists for The People’s Choice Award. The People’s Choice is determined by online voting and encourages voters to think about what they value and think of as “beautiful” in architecture.

Anyone may vote in this poll, open now through January 23, 2020 at 12pm. The winner of both the People’s Choice Award and the Harleston Parker Medal will be announced at the BSA Awards Gala on January 23, 2020.

Cast your vote here!

 

Harvard Smith Center is Harleston Parker Medal Finalist

We are thrilled to share the Richard A. & Susan F. Smith Campus Center is a finalist for the Harleston Parker Medal!

This annual award seeks to recognize “the single most beautiful building or other structure” built in the metropolitan Boston area in the past 10 years. A panel of eight jurors, led by Paul Pettigrew, AIA, narrowed down nominations to six finalists, including the Smith Campus Center at Harvard.

The winner of the 2019 Harleston Parker Medal will be announced at the BSA Design Awards Gala, held on Thursday, January 23, 2020, in the Morris Auditorium at the 1981 Harleston Parker Medal-winning Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.

Read more about the Smith Campus Center here.

View the other Harleston Parker Medal finalists here.

Smith Center Cover Feature in RETROFIT

Featured on the cover of RETROFIT‘s September/October issue is the newly-renovated Smith Campus Center at Harvard University.

In “Harvard University Updates a Brutalist Structure Into a Campus Center That Also Supports the Wider Community,” Bruner/Cott Principal Henry Moss, AIA, LEED AP, discusses the recent renovation of the Richard A. Susan F. Smith Campus Center.

“Designed as an administrative building by Josep Lluis Sert, dean of Harvard University’s Graduate School of Design, in 1958, Holyoke Center, a Brutalist building on Harvard Square, was completed in 1966. The 100-foot-tall concrete structure was a remarkable work of urban design for its time, proposing innovative street-level pedestrian space at its base. But as the seminal building approached its half-century mark, it had become unloved and well-worn during the passing years.

In 2013, seeking to realize its first-ever physical hub for students, faculty, staff, visitors and the Cambridge, Mass., community at large, university representatives decided to repurpose the lower floors of the building as the new Richard A. and Susan F. Smith Campus Center. Part of a multi-year effort to create and improve common spaces across Harvard to ensure its physical spaces would foster the intellectual, cultural and social experience, as well as support the wider community, the revived building was envisioned as the new meeting place of ‘town and gown.'”l-worn during the passing years.

Read the full RETROFIT article here.

Cambridge Historical Commission Honors Harvard Smith Campus Center

Congratulations to Harvard University for being selected to receive an award from the Cambridge Historical Commission for the restoration of the Richard A. & Susan F. Smith Campus Center!

The Cambridge Preservation Awards Program honors property owners who conserve and protect the city’s architecture.

This award will be presented at a ceremony and reception on May 16th which will showcase the project in a formal presentation.

Thank you, Cambridge Historical Commission and the City of Cambridge!

 

You can learn more about the Smith Campus Center here.

Harvard Smith Campus Center is U.S. Building of the Week

The Richard A. & Susan F. Smith Campus Center at Harvard University was named the U.S. Building of the Week by world-architects!

Part of an ongoing university “Common Spaces” initiative, the new Smith Campus Center was designed to ensure its physical spaces foster the campus’s intellectual, cultural, and social experience and support the wider community. The project reconfigures the first, second, and tenth floors, reinterpreting the history and logic of Josep Lluis Sert’s architecture in a series of additions to, and removals from, the existing fabric to create a family of new internal spaces interspersed with a captured internal and external landscape.

Sert served as Dean of the Harvard Graduate School of Design from 1953 to 1969, during which time he designed the Holyoke Center across the street from Harvard Square and the gates to Harvard Yard. Now the Smith Campus Center, the administrative building was renovated by Hopkins Architects with Bruner/Cott Architects.

Read the full feature here.

 

 

Smith Campus Center Reviewed in Boston Globe

The opening of the newly-renovated Richard A. & Susan F. Smith Campus Center has had the Harvard community buzzing with excitement.

A thoughtful, yet radical, reappraisal of the original architecture of Josep Lluis Sert (1902-1983), the new Smith Center is part of Harvard’s ‘Common Spaces’ program pioneered by Harvard President Emeritus, Drew Faust.

Recently, Robert Campbell of The Boston Globe had a chance to visit the Smith Center and share his thoughts;

“…you never lose touch with the city outdoors as your near neighbor, because you can see it looking back at you through so many glass walls and windows. Pedestrian bridges span the space and lead you to roof terraces. Most amazing are what Harvard calls the “green walls”: vertical gardens that hang on the walls and look like hedges but never touch the ground. You wander freely as if you were in an urban landscape rather than an enclosed interior.”

Read the full Boston Globe review here.

360° Views of Harvard’s Most Memorable Spaces

Outgoing Harvard President, Drew Faust, took some time to reflect on her favorite spaces on campus. She shared with The Harvard Gazette the places, times, and ways Harvard marked her, including times of joy, laughter, sorrow, and poignancy. From the recently-renovated Lavietes Basketball Pavilion to the Smith Campus Center currently under construction, Bruner/Cott is responsible for many of Faust’s favorite and most memorable spaces during her ten years as president. The following 360° videos will allow you to experience these projects through her eyes.

 

Lavietes Basketball Pavilion

“I remember very soon after I became president, attending a women’s basketball game and celebrating with them my ascension to female power.”

First constructed in 1926, Lavietes Pavilion is the second-oldest active basketball facility in the United States; a major goal of the project is to celebrate the intimacy and historic charm of the building and showcase the history of Harvard Basketball and Harvard Athletics. Bruner/Cott has been a part of the growth of the Lavietes Pavilion since its first renovation in the 1980s when it was the Briggs Athletic Center. Read more.

 

Memorial Hall 

“It’s hard for me to believe that this wonderful building and that wonderful space was left almost to disuse.”

In collaboration with Venturi, Scott Brown, Bruner/Cott restored the historic shell and upgraded the building to contemporary standards. The restored space boasts hammerbeam trusses, stained glass windows, stenciled ceiling details, walnut paneling, new flooring and custom-designed furniture. Bruner/Cott was responsible for the entire 15,000 sf food service operation, including a total kitchen redesign, new serveries, and Loker Student Commons on the lower level. Read more.

 

Knafel Center (Radcliffe Gymnasium)

“Radcliffe alums not only used that balcony as a track, they had to learn how to lower themselves on a rope from the balcony onto the floor because it was believed that it would be important for women to know how to use a rope to get out of a burning building.”

Radcliffe Gymnasium was designed in 1898 by McKim Mead & White as a gym for students at Radcliffe College. The reinterpreted gymnasium is now a lecture and event salon for the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study in Radcliffe Yard. The Gymnasium’s versatile, multi-use spaces are popular with the entire Harvard community. The large second-floor lecture space — used every day for informal gatherings and study — can be easily converted into a formal setting for social events, with full provisions for catering. The upper-level former running track is now a “walking and talking” track for discussions and informal viewing of presentations and lectures. Read more.

 

Richard A. and Susan F. Smith Campus Center

“A university-wide space, in which people could bump into each other, share ideas, find spaces in which to have meetings for their organizations and groups, and embody the sort of unity that I felt would strengthen the university.”

The 1960-65 Holyoke Center by Josep Lluis Sert in Harvard Square is undergoing a major transformation to attract and mix the varied constituencies within the university – faculty, undergraduates, staff, graduate students, and engaged visitors. Bruner/Cott is working with the Harvard client team and design architect, Hopkins Architects of London on extensive programming and sensitive transformation of this campus icon. Construction work, including façade restoration, additions, and interiors, began in the spring of 2016 and is slated for completion in 2018. Read more.

 

To read the entire Harvard Gazette article, click here. Congratulations to Drew Faust on a wonderful career at Harvard University!