The spruced-up Lobby 7 took a big step forward last week as the initial renovation phase of the Institute's main entry--the first renovation since the William Barton Rogers Building was completed in 1938--was unveiled.
The skylight was open and lit for the first time since the World War II blackout, while cleaned and restored stone, painted metal and wood, and plaster surfaces were unveiled. In addition, new lighting has been installed to enhance the dramatic effects of the area.
When the renovations are completed, Lobby 7 will contain a cafï¿½, a receptacle wall for newspaper, mail and recycling containers, and various other informational displays. These additions are being designed by Urban Instruments Inc ., headed by Associate Professor Wellington Reiter of architecture, which has been engaged in the project since 1997. Some of these changes will be in place by late spring.
As part of the project, the exterior bronze window wall, limestone facades and dome will be fully restored to their original appearance. This will be done under the direction of David Fixler of the architecture firm Einhorn Yaffee Prescott .
Until the new system for the display of information in Lobby 7 is available, the Department of Facilities will install temporary areas where information may be displayed beginning on Monday, Feb. 4. These will serve as the former "drop poster" spaces.
Reservations for these spots will now be administered by staff in the Information Center in Room 7-121, following established guidelines. Applications are now being accepted. Interested parties may e-mail Lee Corbett at email@example.com, call x3-4795, or pick up an application in the Information Center.
Two IAP events have been scheduled to solicit suggestions about the restoration and the lobby's future look. The sessions, on Jan. 17 and Jan. 23, both start at noon in the Student Center's Sala de Puerto Rico. Lunch will be provided.
On Thursday, Jan. 17, the renovation and restoration work will be discussed. The session's secondary purpose will be to consider the future of information display in other areas of the Institute, including the Stata Center for Computer, Information and Intelligence Sciences, scheduled to open in 2003.
On Wednesday, Jan. 23, the discussion will center on specific suggestions about the types of technology that might be used to display information and the infrastructure needed to support students in this regard.
Anyone interested in attending either or both sessions should e-mail Gayle Gallagher at firstname.lastname@example.org.
A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on January 9, 2002.