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Inside Penn’s New College House by Bohlin Cywinski Jackson

Movie rooms, courtyards, and green roofs galore

Penn's New College House on Hill Field won’t celebrate its official ribbon-cutting ceremony until September 13, but students have been moved for two weeks and are no doubt enjoying their Bohlin Cynwinski Jackson-designed digs.

The dormitory broke ground in November 2013, and we’ve excitedly watched construction progress on the university’s first-ever residential building designed as a college house. Today, what was once an blank, open space on the campus is now a three-sided, 193,000-square-foot dormitory with green roofs galore, a sloping lawn, a media center, and enough rooms to house 350 students as well as faculty and graduate students.

"The building delights on so many levels," said University of Pennsylvania’s architect David Hollenberg in a statement. "In particular, its assured manipulation of scale, which breaks down what is actually an enormous building into multiple integrated parts at human scale."

Here’s how the site has changed from the beginning of 2016 to today.

Bohlin Cywinski Jackson, which is noted for its work on the Liberty Bell Center and the U.S. flagship stores for Apple, designed a dormitory with a brick and limestone facade. Tall, glass towers break up the facade, allowing views of the interior community spaces and the neighboring campus. The firm Michael Vergason Landscape Architects designed the dormitory's surrounding landscape features. The building is aiming for LEED Silver certification.

It's the second architecturally-significant building to open this year on Penn's campus. Earlier this summer, the Perry World House finished up construction after undergoing a $17.8 million renovation.