Montclair State University, Science Hall

Upper Montclair, New Jersey

  • FIRM

    Urbahn Architects


    Montclair State University

  • AREA

    60,000 sq.ft.





The Science Hall, an addition to the Math and Sciences Building, is a clearly articulated expression of the functions and building systems of a teaching laboratory. The design called for a new home for the biology and biochemistry departments. The program included 11 teaching labs, 19 research labs and lab support spaces, and 19 faculty offices. Also included is a ADDITIONAL INFORMATIONCOST PER SQ FT$233.33FEATURED IN2001 Architectural Portfolio research greenhouse with specific solar- orientation requirements.

Early design studies indicated that the only feasible location was a 150-foot-wide area north of the existing facility. The site, while narrow in itself, was riddled with underground utility lines, further limiting the usable footprint to a much narrower sliver, about 90 feet.

The design approach entailed a series of modules on each side of a corridor running the length of the building. Sandwiched between the large teaching labs were lab support spaces. Research labs were placed at the ends of the building, allowing them to have windows and giving them a degree of seclusion. To accommodate future flexibility, the design keeps the floor plates as uninterrupted as possible by locating duct shafts, stairs and other vertical penetrations along the perimeter of the building.