Facility Focus (Historic Renovations)

Oregon State University: Strand Agriculture Hall

Oregon State University: Strand Agriculture Hall


For 100 years Strand Agriculture Hall served Oregon State University (OSU) in Corvallis as its home for the College of Agricultural Science. Even with its highly visible and enviable location as the only campus building to front both the East and West Quads, after decades of infill projects and poorly conceived modifications the historic classroom building had become unwelcoming, dark, outdated and lacked any community spaces for students, faculty and staff.

Hennebery Eddy Architects helped OSU transform the historic, 116,000-squarefoot building into a 21st-century learning and socially interactive environment, while retaining the original character and integrity of the historic building.

The rehabilitation included a new entrance portico and terrace on the west elevation, providing a high-profile entrance and heightened identity fronting the Memorial Quad; a full seismic upgrade; and all new mechanical, electrical and plumbing systems. The design team introduced a series of transformative ADA/Universal Access solutions, from sloped exterior sidewalks that became primary pathways for all building users; to interior hearths that merge accessible ramps, gathering areas and art into some of the most desirable social spaces on campus.

Many historic character-defining features were restored, including three original open stairs and the high ceilings throughout the building. After Hennebery Eddy conducted a condition assessment of the building’s 452 original wood windows, OSU chose to restore them. The windows are once again an integral part of the building’s passive cooling and fresh air strategy, and in tandem with the added mass of new concrete shear walls and ceiling fans, embrace the energy-efficient way the building was originally cooled.

Upon completion of the rehabilitation, Strand Ag Hall, with its modern improvements, remains, in essence, historic Strand Ag Hall.

This article originally appeared in the issue of .