Merck Research Laboratories

This is a project by KlingStubbins and it is located at Boston, MA, United States. Project's program: Research laboratories, offices, dining, and auditorium. There are twenty one images for Merck Research Laboratories.

Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
© Paul Warchol Photography

Project details

Project images

  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins
  • Merck Research Laboratories by KlingStubbins

Designer's statement

The design of the Merck Research Laboratories Boston (MRL Boston) was governed by a set of goals and aspirations that shared in the creation of an environment that not only supports, but contributes to, the practice of scientific research.

MRL Boston is a 12-story research laboratory tower with six levels of below-grade parking located in the Longwood Medical Area of Boston, a highly active educational, cultural, and historical environment. The site is at the juncture of high-rise institutional buildings to the west and south, and lower-scaled academic buildings to the east and north. As a result of the building’s adjacencies, considerations of scale, material, function, and site geometry were paramount in the design process. The context within which MRL Boston exists is one toward which a sympathetic, not similar, response seemed appropriate. To achieve a singular identity, the materials and coloration chosen allows the building to present itself uniquely.

Massing is a direct reaction to the site limitations, and the very different context on each of the four sides. The laboratory tower is similar in scale to the research and healthcare facilities to the south, and the northern extension corresponds to the scale of Emmanuel College. The juncture between the two components is given definition by an atrium that is at the terminus of the entry drive. Here, the various geometries of the site converge to define the atrium space – a space that serves as a collector of people and events on the ground floor and as an artery that binds the tower to its lower wing with bridges on the second, third, and fourth floors.

The program’s resolution was the obvious point of departure; and although there existed many dictates respective to adjacency and interrelationship, the design was further influenced by concerns for flexibility and adaptability. The complex program consists of chemistry, biology, and pharmacology laboratories, as well as offices, conferencing and interaction areas, cafeteria, auditorium, and library. The private functions of research are housed within the tower with restrictions of access. The open and shared spaces are located in the low wing with fewer access restrictions. Plan determinations were made with consideration for movement from public to private, and along routes which are conducive to promoting interaction.

The character of the building was influenced by issues of program and adjacencies, but more directly by willful decisions involving imagery. The design is very much about the interface with light; no other consideration is seen as so contributory to ultimately providing a range of experiences. The building’s enclosure, while satisfying criteria of comfort, containment, and security, is more about the myriad of presentation possibilities than it is about boundary. The architectural character endeavors to be understood in terms which are readily associated with scientific research, technology, discovery, and affording both the viewers of the building and the participants within layers of experience.

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