North Adams, MA – The Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) opened the doors for the current school year to its newest building on campus, the new Center for Science & Innovation. This $40 million facility is the first major construction project on the campus, literally in the last 40 years.
Designed by EYP and constructed by Columbia Construction, MCLA’s new 67,000sf Center for Science & Innovation will house flexible teaching and research laboratories, and a mixture of office space. It also has a rooftop classroom and greenhouse, a three story atrium that accommodates up to 100 people, and informal learning spaces with a 72-seat tiered lecture hall. The new state-of-the-art integrated facility will primarily be used by the chemistry, biology, environmental science, psychology and physics departments along with the college’s Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) Pipeline and Berkshire Environmental Resources Center (BERC).
Special features include a terra cotta façade with metal paneling, along with a curtain wall system and punched windows. Additionally, in an effort to extend the learning environment an outdoor teaching circle was constructed.
The project is targeting a Silver rating within the U.S. Green Building Council’s Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification system. A few green features include solar shading on curtain wall window system to reduce heat gain, a photovoltaic solar array system, and a vegetated green roof area. In addition, the project team used Building Information Modeling (BIM).