College Planning & Management

MAY 2013

College Planning & Management is the information resource for professionals serving the college and university market. Covering facilities, security, technology and business.

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Page 92 of 99

Facility Focus PHOTOS © ANTON GRASSL/ESTO LIBR ARIES & LE ARNING COMMONS The Johns Hopkins University Brody Learning Commons A S A CONCEPT, THE BRODY Learning Commons at Johns Hopkins in Baltimore was born from a need for space. The mid-century Milton S. Eisenhower Library was out of room for scholarly research and had no spaces for collaborative study. Facilities for its prestigious rare books and materials conservation program were cramped. Students had a few simple wishes: ample plugs for electronics, group study rooms, and natural light. What the University needed, and what the 42,000-sq.-ft. Learning Commons has provided, is a portal: a way to leverage the library's central role as the intellectual heart of the campus and to serve as a gateway to its physical and virtual resources. Designed by Shepley Bulfinch, the light-filled Learning Commons includes group study spaces, seminar rooms, special collections, and a state-of-the-art conservation lab. The lab is home to a Mellon-funded project that sponsors original scientific research on new approaches to paper and manuscript conservation. The Rare Books and Manuscripts collection is on prominent physical display, supplemented by digital presentation of materials and teaching and learning spaces that give students hands-on experience with material artifacts. Its 100-seat quiet reading room provides an atmosphere of scholarship that complements the interactive technologies and group study spaces that are located prominently throughout the building. The central atrium, which provides a transition between the new building and the existing Library, allows natural light to reach the lower levels of the Library while providing a civic space for the Learning Commons and the Library community. Located in the atrium, the 84-sq.-ft. visualization wall is part of a joint research initiative between the School of Engineering and the Library system to explore human-computer interactions and engage students in the creative process of designing applications. Pursuing LEED Silver accreditation, the Learning Commons anticipates being the fi rst LEED Silver project on the campus. CPM MAY 2013 / COLLEGE PLANNING & MANAGEMENT 93

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