Redefining interdisciplinary science on a tropical, oceanfront campus
With a legion of budding science scholars at the core of its student body, Eckerd College in St. Petersburg, Florida commissioned a state-of-the-art science building to further strengthen its distinctive biology, chemistry and biochemistry programs. Adhering to its core values of ecological and environmental stewardship, the school worked closely with CannonDesign to employ sustainability measures wherever possible in the design of its James Center for Molecular and Life Sciences (JCMLS). One particularly innovative feature is a revolutionary air-conditioning system which capitalizes upon a pipeline of reclaimed, nonpotable water from the nearby St. Petersburg wastewater treatment facility to cool the building. This and other measures helped earn the JCMLS LEED Platinum certification from GBCI/USGBC.
Another priority for the college was to create spaces that provide opportunities for interdisciplinary collaboration. Chemistry and biology labs were collocated to encourage interaction among students of different disciplines, and many of the laboratory and lounge spaces are seamlessly integrated to encourage teamwork in science and research capacities. The layout also encourages greater access to faculty by Eckerd’s science scholars, ensuring they have the support they need to change the world through science.
75% of construction waste diverted from landfills
Occupants enjoy outdoor views in 90% of regularly occupied spaces.
I think CannonDesign has been a tremendous asset to this project. By my count we’ve worked with 42 separate CannonDesigners to accomplish this project, all the way from design through construction administration. The expertise the group brings is critical on complex projects like the James Center. Everyone excels in their subject area, they play well together in the sandbox, and it’s been a real pleasure to complete a project this way.
– Bill McKenna, Director of Planning, Development and Construction, Eckerd College