PENN STATE UNIVERSITY
LOCATION: SCRANTON, PA
CLIENT: PENN STATE UNIVERSITY
MARKET SECTOR: EDUCATION
SIZE: 60,000 SF
PS&S assisted PSU in the development of new science laboratories on two of their satellite campuses – Worthington Scranton and Berks (near Reading).
At Worthington Scranton, the task was to upgrade existing science labs to support a new science curriculum which will the prototypical design to be used on their other 16 satellite campuses across the State of Pennsylvania.
At Berks, the task was to develop a feasibility study and estimate for the conversion of an existing 60,000 sf engineering/science facility into science and academic classrooms.
Both projects required extensive interaction with faculty to program their new space. At Scranton, the space was limited to their present footprints, which meant that the space had to be phased to be constructed during summer breaks as well. Faculty research space was also limited or nonexistent for some disciplines. At Berks, though the Physics, Chemistry and Biology faculties were offered significantly more space than they had, reconciling their programs was very challenging.
THE PS&S SOLUTION
At Scranton, the construction was phased over several summers. Teaching labs were configured with flexible furniture, with exhaust hoods and other fixed elements on benches at the perimeter of the rooms. Teaching podia were developed with full A/V capability, including cameras and flat screens for long-distance learning. Chemistry, Biology and Physics labs were all specifically designed to the methodology and equipment of that discipline.
At Berks, blocking and stacking diagrams were developed for each iteration of the program, to help the faculties competing for space to fully understand the implications of their requests. The final blocking and stacking diagram also was used to develop completely new approaches to HVAC and utilities, as well as a phasing strategy that could be used to renovate the building.