Situated at the mouth of the Cape Cod Canal, the Massachusetts Maritime Academy is the second-oldest state maritime academy in the United States. The Academy combines a rigorous academic program with a regimented lifestyle intended to instill honor, responsibility, discipline, and leadership in its cadets. Residential life is a critical component of the Academy experience and strives to create a sense of community and supportive living and learning environment for cadets.
Bruner/Cott is working with the Massachusetts State College Building Authority (MSCBA) and the Massachusetts Maritime Academy to construct a new residence hall that will consist of mixed construction, with two, wood-framed stories of cadet units on top of a single story of mixed amenity spaces. Exterior details like cedar shingles, dormers, and single hung windows complement the distinctive, traditional vernacular of Cape Cod architecture.
The building program seeks to create a residential experience that supports the mission of the Academy – preparing cadets for careers in maritime transportation, engineering, maritime business, emergency management, facilities management, and environmental fields – while also supporting a specific need for summer revenue uses such as hotel and conference events. The ground floor comprises a main lobby, a multipurpose event space, catering kitchen, public restrooms, conference rooms, and accessory storage areas. The second and third floors follow a typical floor plan with 18 dormitory units per floor, all doubles, and a shared common space on each floor.
The site and surrounding MMA campus are vulnerable to coastal flooding, hurricane force winds, and extreme rainfall. Measures of sustainability and resiliency are incorporated into the design, including ‘resiliency rooms’ served by emergency-generated power that allow students to shelter-in-place. Elevated mechanical and electrical equipment reduce the risk of extended loss of resources for residents, and a high-performance building envelope provides passive survivability and increases the building’s overall resilience level.