Cornell University Milstein Hall

Cornell University Milstein Hall

Ithaca, New York
United States
Cornell University Milstein Hall

TYLin provided structural engineering design services for a modern two-story addition for Cornell's College of Architecture, Art and Planning (AAP).

The new building connects to Sibley and Rand Halls on the second floor, uniting the AAP campus. A presentation area, gallery space, and the 250-seat auditorium are located at the basement level. The flexible studio space on the second floor is suffused with natural light from the surrounding floor-to-ceiling windows and skylights. Challenging aspects of the design included an interior dome and bridge and the building’s cantilever.

Dome: At the basement level, the reinforced concrete dome rises from the concrete foundation walls, enclosing critique spaces. The outer surface of the dome’s western slope supports auditorium seating with rows of wall mounted seats. A reinforced concrete bridge with reinforced concrete truss rails extends across the dome’s interior. The stair leading down to the basement level from this bridge acts as an angled column support.

Trusses: The second floor and roof of Milstein Hall cantilever 50 feet over University Avenue. TYLin worked with architect OMA on an intense three-week charette to develop the hybrid profile of the five trusses, which incorporate features of conventional and Vierendeel trusses. The exposed vertical and diagonal members of the trusses are located to minimize impact on the interior second floor space.

Milstein Hall’s design incorporates sustainable practices including recycled content in steel and concrete. Tight coordination between structure and building systems minimized its volume, resulting in a reduction of overall building material. Additional sustainable features include skylights for natural lighting, radiant floor heat, and a green roof above the second-floor studio spaces. The building is LEED Gold certified

Honor Award for Architecture, 2013
Engineering Excellence Awards, Structural Systems, Diamond Award, 2013
ACEC New York
Excellence in Structural Engineering Award, 2012

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