The New Palmer, Pittenger and Roberts Hall is a new suite-style residential community at Swarthmore College.  The project creates a Residential Village at the crossroads of the academic campus, the athletics facilities, and downtown Swarthmore. This building adds 120 beds of apartment style housing on a highly constrained site between three 19th Century Dorms and the left field fence of the Clothier Baseball Field. The design solution reconfigured the outfield fence as part of the building and features a landscaped second level terrace that overlooks the field. The new building doubles the student population housed in the three adjacent dorms. To preserve the intimate scale of the existing context, the new dorm is broken into three separate massings--each similar in scale to its nearest adjacent dorm. The space between the new and old buildings creates an outdoor commons that becomes the center of this 240 student residential community. 

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Site Plan and Typical Apartment Plan 
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Apartment Living Room

This project is the first building to employ the ambitious Swarthmore College Environmental Sustainability Framework. The building incorporates many design features that enhance its environmental sustainability including: roof-top solar panels for power and hot water, ground source heat pumps, underground rainwater storage for irrigation of the baseball field, a high-performance building envelope, and acid etched glazing to reduce bird strikes. The thickness of the super insulated exterior walls allows every bedroom window sill to also serve as a seat.  Working closely with student groups, the administration, and staff, the new facility is designed to encourage lifestyle choices that promote a high level of environmental awareness. Examples of this include water use sensors, clotheslines in each bedroom, a hands-on waste/recycling/compost program, and architectural features like bike storage in the entry vestibules. 
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Entry Vestibule Bike Storage 
Situated in an arboretum, Swarthmore’s campus landscape stitches together an eclectic mix of buildings that represent a variety of time periods and styles. Stone is a commonly used material on campus, and a range of sedimentary, metamorphic, and igneous types add to the architectural variety. Referencing both the landscape and architectural material culture of the campus, the New Palmer, Pittenger, and Roberts Hall uses slate as the only visible non-glazing cladding material. Used as both shingles and load bearing units, the material’s smooth fissility and foliated perpendicular grain showcase the fascinating geology of the material. The bearing portion of the wall uses shingle offcuts as shims to course the stone. This technique favors splitting over cutting as a way of fully revealing the grain of the stone and reducing its embodied energy from processing. 
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Slate Shingles, Sculpings, and Shims 

Slate Shingles, Sculpings, and Shims

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Level 1 Plan

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Level 2 Plan 

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