The Barnard College Diana Center | Notes of Interest

The Barnard College Diana Center's site is set within an intimate campus compressed within the dense urban environment of Manhattan. Comprised of an eclectic group of predominantly brick buildings, the campus is focused around Lehman Lawn with disconnected landscape spaces at the periphery.

Located between the Lawn and Broadway, the Diana Center unites landscape and architecture, interior and exterior spaces, presenting a window onto the College and the city. The 98,000 square foot multi-use building establishes an innovative nexus for artistic, social, and intellectual life on the campus. The facility brings together spaces for art, architecture, theater, and art history, as well as faculty offices, a dining room, and a cafe.

From the historic entrance gate at Broadway, the wedge-shaped design frames a clear sightline linking the central campus at Lehman Lawn to the lower level historic core of the campus. The Diana Center extended Lehman Lawn horizontally and vertically; descending planted terraces cascade north to Milbank Hall, previously isolated by a 14 foot-high retaining wall plaza, and ascending double-height atria bring natural light and views into the seven story structure.

Additional Credits

  • Acoustical: Cerami & Associates, Inc. with T.M Technology Partners, Inc.
  • Audio Visual: Cerami & Associates, Inc.
  • Cost Estimator: AMIS Inc.
  • Curtain Wall Consultant: R.A. Heintges Architects Consultants
  • Engineer: Langan (Civil); Jaros, Baum & Bolles Consulting Engineers (Mechanical); Severud Engineers (Structural)
  • Food Service: Ricca Newmark Design
  • Landscape Architect: HM White Site Architects
  • Lighting Design: Brandston Partners, Inc.
  • Sustainability: Viridian Energy & Environmental, LLC
  • Theater Consultant: Fisher Dachs; Jaffe Holden Acoustics
  • Photo Credit: © Albert Vecerka/Esto;© Paul Warchol Photography
  • MEPFP/Vertical Transportation Engineering Consultant: Jaros, Baum & Bolles Consulting Engineers
  • Structural Engineer: Severud Associates
  • Civil Engineer: Langan Engineering and Environmental Services
  • Retail Consultant: Jeanne Giordano
  • Cost Estimator: AMIS Inc.
  • Theatre Acoustic Consultant: Jaffe Holden Acoustics

The Barnard College Diana Center

Jury Comments

This project is elegant and inviting – it reads as a diagram for interactive/collaborative education both inside and out.

The integration of the landscape and architecture is the hallmark of this project and the heart of a good campus building.

It still gives a sense of solidity to the wall between the enclosed campus and the outside world, but allows some transparency from the building out to Broadway and back in from the street.

2011 Institute Honor Awards for Architecture Jury

  • David Miller, FAIA, (Chair)
  • The Miller Hull Partnership, LLP
  • Seattle
  • Ashley Clark, Assoc. AIA
  • LandDesign Inc.
  • Charlotte
  • Curtis Fentress, FAIA
  • Fentress Architects
  • Denver
  • T. Gunny Harboe, FAIA
  • Harboe Architect, PC
  • Chicago
  • David Neuman, FAIA
  • University of Virginia, University Architect
  • Charlottesville, Va.
  • Louis Pounders, FAIA
  • ANF Architects
  • Memphis
  • Sarah E. Snodgrass, AIAS Representative
  • Parsons The New School for Design
  • New York City
  • Allison Williams, FAIA
  • Perkins & Will
  • San Francisco
  • Jennifer Yoos, AIA
  • VJAA
  • Minneapolis

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