Schapiro and Hollander Halls are part of the phased reconfiguration of the north side of Williams College’s classic New England campus. Together with historic Stetson Hall, they define a new campus quadrangle housing the College’s Humanities and Social Sciences programs along with the its central library.
Schapiro and Hollander Halls are strategically placed along the heavily traveled path between the Stetson Library and the student center, to maximize student and faculty interaction. Consistent with the College’s intensely personal teaching style, the 160 faculty offices accommodate two-student tutorial instruction. Other teaching venues, supporting both lecture and seminar formats, are arranged along corridors that use daylight and exterior views to animate the buildings’ places of social encounter.
Both buildings are organized around a cross-axis extending across the future quadrangle, connecting the galleries of the two buildings and visually extending into the heart of Williamstown. The interiors of the two-story glass galleries are clad on one side with spaced maple boards, provided by a Massachusetts sustainable forest cooperative of which the College is a member.
The buildings’ massing and exterior articulation respect the scale of the surrounding campus. Flemish bond brick and limestone trim, borrowed from Stetson Hall, form an elegant perimeter along the quad. A third-floor recessed ribbon of glass reduces the apparent height of the halls, while providing unbroken views of the Berkshire Mountains. Office windows are oversized, admitting abundant natural light, with sunscreens protecting those that face south. Light monitors mark the entrances of the two buildings, providing daylight into open-framed third floor gathering spaces.