Leers Weinzapfel Associates has completed Anonymous Hall at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire.
The $28 million project reuses and adds to a vacant 1960s library in the heart of North Campus’ walled quadrangle, transforming it into an administrative and social center for the graduate school of arts and sciences and a community center for the region. As part of a larger campus renewal plan, measurements show the project is close to net zero energy consumption.
Conveniently located among 1960s medical school buildings, the 3065-m2 (32,995 square feet)—which also includes new entrances to surrounding structures, a wide pedestrian bridge, and new circulation between buildings—transforms a secluded edge of the college into an inviting north quad on a grand scale. The initiative generates an accessible and seamless link between North Campus and the historic Green and Main Campus, allowing it to be shared with undergraduate science.
The demolition of an unused lab adjacent to the old Dana Hall has made way for an addition, which reorients the building to create campus connections to the south. Now the new North Campus Social Center, the addition houses the lobby and a cafe with an adjacent patio. Linked together by a spiral staircase visible from the South Lawn, the upper floors of the building contain collegiate faculty offices, classrooms, and interactive gathering places for students. The roof level features a solar panel canopy and a south-facing planted terrace overlooking the Vermont hills, Baker Tower, and main campus. The walk-in graduate student lounge on the lower level opens to a screened courtyard under a pedestrian bridge.
The building was stripped of its columns and slabs to remove hazardous materials in the walls of the existing library before construction could begin. As a repurposed concrete structure in a cold climate, the choices of highly insulated terracotta clad walls, triple glazed windows and a photovoltaic (PV) canopy created a low embodied energy building that approximates the net zero energy consumption. The façade system incorporates several advanced technologies including vacuum insulated panels, krypton filled triple glazing, integral wire mesh shading and tilting structural glazing (51mm [2-in.] insulating glazing [IGUs]).
“This project brings together two previously divided sections of Dartmouth’s venerable grounds, creating a new social hub and a new sense of place on its North Campus,” said Josiah Stevenson, Director-in-Charge of Leers Weinzapfel.