Initial plans revealed for Whitman College, science library

by Ruth Stevens
While still in the early planning stages, it's already apparent that two major construction projects slated to begin in 2004 will bring some eye-catching -- and dramatically contrasting -- architecture to the campus.

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In September, the trustees' Committee on Grounds and Buildings reviewed preliminary designs for the two projects: Whitman College, the University's sixth residential college, which will be built between Baker Rink and Dillon Gym; and the science library, which will be constructed on the corner of Washington Road and Ivy Lane near Fine Hall.

Whitman College: Demetri Porphyrios, a Princeton graduate alumnus and one of the world's leading traditional-style architects, is designing Whitman College. Whitman will be designed in the collegiate gothic style that ties in with nearby dormitories built in the first third of the 20th century. The model of the 275,000-square-foot structure shown to the trustees features three courtyards. The north court is three sided and joined to a south court, which is four sided but is accessible through an open arcade, according to Jon Hlafter, director of physical planning. Current plans also show an open, three-sided east court that incorporates a master's residence.

Science library: Frank Gehry, who is known for his body of provocative, expressionistic work, is creating the plans for the science library. His signature bold, curved shapes that seem to defy gravity are evident in the design of the science library. Initial plans show a central tower -- about half the height of Fine Tower -- surrounded by two wings, all faced with metal and glass. Hlafter noted that some of the elements of the structure may be brick, tying in with the surrounding buildings.

For both projects, the next step is estimating the costs represented in the schematic design. "We're hoping that, by the first of the year, we will have satisfied ourselves that both projects are on budget and that both will continue into design development and working drawings," Hlafter said.

He said it is hoped that construction can begin in early 2004. The projects are scheduled to be completed by the middle of 2006 and occupied in that fall semester.

The full story is available in the Weekly Bulletin.


Science library

The early designs for the science library show a central tower -- about half the height of Fine Tower -- surrounded by two wings, all faced with metal and glass.

Whitman College

This initial model for Whitman College shows three courtyards incorporated into the design. At the top left is New South. The four-sided south courtyard is accessible through an open arcade.





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