Harvard University, Cronkhite Center, Cambridge, Massachusetts
The Harvard Cronkhite Center graduate student housing and dining hall has undergone an extensive renovation to reflect the versatile programming needs of the University’s Graduate Commons Program. Wagner Hodgson worked closely with the architect to update the common space for ADA compliance and to fully extend the common dining and event spaces outdoors.
An exterior accessible door was added to the dining area common space, connecting to an upper bluestone terrace in the courtyard. Existing circular stone steps expand down to a new lower bluestone terrace, providing additional outdoor informal seating and flexible event space. An accessible walkway threads through the existing brick retaining wall to connect the two terrace levels. A new retaining wall was carefully placed, based on mature existing canopy trees, to create a light well to lower levels of the residence hall.
Existing brick walkways were reconfigured and reset to lead from the courtyard, past new bicycle racks, toward campus and Harvard Square. Extensive new planting was provided in the common as well as along the street scape.