Fradkin & McAlpin Architects

Fradkin & McAlpin Architects

New York, NY


College Science & Tech Center

When the NYC architecture firm of Fradkin & McAlpin Architects was asked by Landmark College to collaborate with Vermont design-build firm Breadloaf Corporation to design a state-of-the-art STEM center at Putney, Vt.’s Landmark College, the nation’s leading higher-ed institution for students with learning challenges and autism spectrum disorders, the architects knew that their biggest challenge was integrating a modern facility — the first new academic structure ever built at Landmark— and the first academic building added to the campus since Edward Durell Stone designed it in the 1960s for what was then Windham College.

What opened in late 2015 as the McFarlane Science, Technology &  Innovation Center succeeds through a design that uses simple, rectilinear massing like that found throughout the campus, a warm palette of materials that complements the existing buildings, and a compelling interplay of forms that reinforces the modern lines of Durell Stone’s plan.

Nowhere is this interplay more evident than in the extended colonnade that Fradkin & McAlpin designed at both the front and back of the new building. It not only completes Durell Stone’s modernist quad; it creates an iconic entrance to the campus.

Each side of the STI Center interprets the colonnade differently while linking the new building to the rest of the campus. On the western, public-facing side, the new colonnade extends from the building’s midpoint across to Stone’s original, creating a new campus nexus at the colonnades’ meeting point. The STI Center’s eastern, quad-facing side also extends the colonnade, this time by using an overhang to create a columned gallery. The gallery welcomes students into the quad, the heart of the campus, and also provides an intimate space where they can gather.

Completely clad in weathered copper, the STI Center’s eastern side has a warm, contemporary feel. The western side uses a red brick which links the building to the other brick-covered buildings of the historic campus.

For the inside of the STI Center, F&M developed a series of mixed-use classrooms, laboratories, study areas and student gathering places, creating a vibrant and creative environment that reflects Landmark’s culture.

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Status: Built
Location: Putney, VT, US
Firm Role: Design Consultant
Additional Credits: Breadloaf Corp. Design-Build