The Graduate College, Princeton University
The Graduate College, considered one of the finest examples of American Collegiate Gothic architecture, embodies progressive educational ideals current at the beginning of the 20th century. The complex, designed by Ralph Adams Cram in 1912, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and includes the landmark Grover Cleveland Tower.
The complex established an all-encompassing academic environment, with a major portion serving as dormitory rooms and suites designed for "gentleman scholars." The restoration by principals and staff of Mills + Schnoering Architects, LLC* addressed the need to retain the historical integrity of these rooms while unobtrusively integrating state-of-the-art life safety and environmental systems. The project was complicated by the presence of asbestos in the existing plaster. This led to the decision to remove and restore the heart pine floors and install new electrical, fire alarm, and heating systems unobtrusively within the subfloor structure.
The project, one of the most extensive dormitory renovations undertaken by Princeton University, included 150,000 square feet of dormitory space as well as a number of public spaces, including the Common Room, Van Dyke Library, Procter Hall Dining Room, the Breakfast Room, the Graduate College Bar, and other basement social spaces.
*working as Short and Ford and Partners.