KPMB Architects have released a design to construct a 17-floor tower for Boston University's new Data Sciences Center. Located on the university’s main Charles River campus, the project will become the tallest building at the university. The vertical design was made to bring together the mathematics, computer science and statistics departments under one roof. Overlooking the Boston skyline and the Charles River, the stacked design will become a new landmark for Boston University.
In spring 2013, the University’s leadership team held a design competition to “find an architect that would make a statement,” says Robert A. Brown, BU president. They selected Toronto-based KPMB Architects to construct a building that would “mark the dynamic change in the University and talk about the century we’re in”—one driven by computational and data sciences. Boston University invited a range of architects to submit for the design, including Safdie Architects, KPMB, Kohn Pedersen Fox, Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, and Elkus Manfredi Architects. KPMB's tower design was created with building spaces that “spiral” around an interior atrium for spontaneous encounters.
The tower project will rise with a 4-story podium topped by 13 floors, each floor slightly off center from the one below it .The design includes proposed interconnected collaboration terraces that form a ramp connecting the ground and second floors. Other floors feature terraces, event spaces, and cafés. The ground floor is designed to be a public space, incorporating informal lobby spaces and general-purpose classrooms, as well as BU’s Early Childhood Learning Lab. The second floor would house the BUild and the BU SPARK! programs, as well as additional classroom, collaboration, and study spaces.
Following an approval process with the city of Boston that could take up to a year, the project could begin site preparation, including drilling test geothermal wells, in spring 2019. The team anticipates full construction to be under way in fall 2019.