January 14, 2009

The rejuvenation of Bertrand Library will be a major step in the enhancement of campus.

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By Sam Alcorn

LEWISBURG, Pa. – With several lead priorities and targets of opportunity identified, Bucknell University’s Campus Master Plan process is entering the conceptual programming phase.

An eight-step process over the next several months includes a space program questionnaire, conceptualizing programming, and conceptual cost-estimating. The findings will be presented to the University’s Board of Trustees for consideration in April. || See related Bucknell Magazine story.

At least two campus forums to gather feedback are planned for the coming weeks. A campus forum to discuss elements related to downtown development will be held on Friday, Jan. 23, in the Elaine Langone Center Forum from noon to 1 p.m.

Academic Quadrangle
At the heart of the planning, which is being assisted by Boston-based consultant Shepley Bulfinch, is a proposed Academic Quadrangle on campus that would include a renovation and an addition for the Bertrand Library, a new Academic East Building, a new Academic West Building, an underground parking facility and a new campus drive.

The new Academic Quadrangle “presents Bucknell with an opportunity to bring together a broad cross-section of intellectual and social life,” said Dennis Hawley ’72 M’73, associate vice president for facilities at Bucknell. “Buildings and landscape will support a flexible teaching and learning environment. A new campus drive and significant underground parking will reinforce this district as a new front face of the University.”

In addition, the quad would provide room for future growth.

School of Management
The Academic East Building would be located near the Breakiron Engineering Building and focus on expanding the science, mathematics and engineering departments as well as research space to support those growing curriculums. The Academic West Building on the new Academic Quad would focus on expanding the social sciences and include the School of Management.

An addition and renovation of Bertrand Library, said Hawley, is a “major step in the expansion of the campus. It will add needed academic space and integrate critical departments such as Teaching and Learning, the Writing Center and Service Learning.”

Southeast of McDonnell Hall, an Arts Complex would house the Art and Art History Department and could provide space for the University’s collections and student and staff art.

“Additional space will be created to allow the consolidation of theatre and dance between Coleman Hall and this new facility,” said Hawley, adding that Tustin Hall could be repurposed or removed.

The planning process has also identified what the University is characterizing as “targets of opportunity.” They include a downtown bookstore, an inn and conference center, downtown Lewisburg offices, welcome and student centers and athletics field projects.

To get to the conceptual programming phase, the University planning and study included:

  • Space inventory
  • Needs assessment
  • 75-year land use plan
  • Building concepts

In 1932, acclaimed architect Jens Larson developed Bucknell’s first campus master plan. That plan emphasized the library and academic quadrangle and open spaces. It remains the guiding force for the campus of today and tomorrow.

The new master plan takes its lead from Larson’s plan, which embraces the campus’ natural topography, while creating flexibility to fit future needs.

Contact: Division of Communications