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2010 AIA Housing Award Recipient

Category 4: Specialized Housing

Alice Paul and David Kemp Residences Halls at Swarthmore College

Photo 1 of 7



    Creative reinterpretation of
    traditional Collegiate
    vernacular… it succeeds both as
    a single building and as a part of
    the larger campus plan.

    There is a wonderful contrast of
    scale between the communal
    elements and the fabric of the
    residential areas.

    Elegant use of stone: both the
    scale and patterning have been
    thoroughly studied and are


    2010 AIA Housing Awards

    Andrew V. Porth, AIA, chair
    Porth Architects, Inc.
    Red Lodge, Mont.

    Natalye Appel, FAIA
    Natalye Appel + Associates

    Geoffrey Goldberg, AIA
    G. Goldberg and Associates

    Grace Kim, AIA
    Schemata Workshop

    Jane Kolleeny
    Architectural Record

    New York City



William Rawn Associates, Architects, Inc.



Swarthmore College



Swarthmore, Pa.

Notes of Interest

These modern buildings seamlessly integrate the two most unique features of this college campus: its traditional stone buildings and the landscape’s function as an arboretum.

Anchoring the southern end of the college's iconic main lawn, the buildings mark the point where the campus fronts downtown. Residences are organized around an "outdoor room," open to sun and lawn views. The halls encourage interaction among students through wide corridors, strategic location of entries and stairs, and generous common space on each floor. A two-story main lounge serves as a "living room" and features an open stairway, allowing students to "see and be seen" as they enter the building. Mixing students of all years, this layout encourages mentoring and fosters community. Additionally, two-story double rooms encourage social interaction within living units.

The halls’ design reflects a long-term institutional engagement with environmental issues. The architects worked with the college during the design, construction, and post-construction phases to ensure that the new residence halls addressed energy consumption, site specificity, groundwater and construction waste management, occupant comfort, and occupant feedback. The halls were designed to be LEED-certified and utilize energy-saving strategies including natural daylighting and vegetative "green" roofs. Green roof plantings, as well as the landscaping surrounding the halls, feature indigenous plant species to incorporate the project into the arboretum.




Ripman Lighting Consultants
Gilmore & Associates, Inc.




LeMessurier Consultants


General Contractor


W.S. Cumby & Son


Landscape Architect


Olin Partnership


Photo Credit


© Robert Benson Photography


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