Original design revealed

Hamilton Hall, built in 1905, was the first building erected on the campus of Columbia University, New York City. Over the years, classrooms and offices were added to the building. A recent renovation and historical restoration recaptures the clarity of the building's original plan while accommodating current needs.

At the outset of the project, the architects were asked to conduct a search for artifacts relating to the core curriculum as the ancestral home of the college. Their search through the university steam tunnels uncovered two large Tiffany glass windows depicting Virgil and Sophocles. The stained-glass windows had been relegated to obscurity in a 1948 campus modernization effort. The windows now have been restored and installed in the ground-floor lobby of Hamilton Hall.

The rest of the ground-floor entrance lobby was restored to its original design, and later additions have been removed. The architects designed new marble floors to match the original. New lighting fixtures recreate the originals that once hung in the lobby in the early 1900s.

A highlight of the renovation is a glass pavilion entrance to the admissions office. The 150-square-foot glass pavilion is inserted within an existing granite garden wall. The admissions office is enclosed in sliding glass walls, which encourage flexible reorganization of the space.

The architect for this project is R.M. Kliment & Frances Halsband Architects (New York City).

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