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.
Sert’s once-revolutionary architecture is being rethought and restored. Changes to the lower two floors, including new glass-enclosed landscapes featuring “displaced nature” and green walls, create a more open interior full of natural light. New, more transparent, spaces improve connectivity between the original arcade and the two side streets. Strikingly contemporary new facades update the original concrete face of the building and provide a more welcoming experience, including new links to outdoor seating and performance areas.
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. This much-needed modernization and reorganization of uses will improve public access to Harvard’s information center, enhance the landscaped plazas at the north and south ends of the site, convert rooftop mechanical areas to public gardens, and provide flexible interior spaces for events and common spaces.
*All renderings courtesy Hopkins Architects.