Photo: Paul Warchol


Harvard University –  Multi-Service Library Facility

New 24,000-SF four-story building houses several administrative and support function offices for the University’s Library and Collection System.  Building includes several conference and training rooms with AV equipment. The facility also includes several floors of open-plan areas, for which concern was expressed regarding speech privacy and control of distracting activity noise between work stations.  Acoustic control in these areas entailed overcoming the challenge of relatively high ceiling height and exposed concrete slab ceiling.  AD’s work accommodated speech privacy and distraction control in the open plan areas, excellent speech intelligibility in conference and meeting rooms, low background noise levels, and providing required sound isolation between spaces.

Harvard University

Cambridge, MA

Project Type
New Construction

Square Footage



Samuel Anderson Architects


Open workspaces on the building’s North side are illuminated by an abundance of natural light yet required accommodations for space reverberance, distraction control and speech privacy.  

Functionality encompassed spaces for quiet study, training rooms, conferencing and offices.  Architectural transparency aesthetics required strong design collaboration to achieve low background noise and required acoustic separations to serve end-users equally well.