Yale University

Sterling Memorial Library Nave Restoration

New Haven, CT

AKF followed Yale’s example of "improving the world today and for future generations" when restoring an iconic campus building to better serve students and staff. The Nave of Yale’s Sterling Memorial Library is the primary entrance into the impressive Gothic Revival building built in 1930. Having never renovated the building in over 80 years, Yale undertook an effort to restore the Nave to its original glory. The project team was challenged with completely concealing horizontal and vertical cabling, piping, ductwork, and infrastructure, making all 21st Century technology ‘’invisible’’ except at the user interface.

Fortunately for the design team, AKF's engineering experts had extensive experience solving challenges in old buildings. AKF’s project manager spent weeks crawling through ductwork to survey existing building systems and rediscovered shafts that had dropped off drawings over the years. These shafts provide an expressway from the basement to the attic and were put to use in the new design for installation of heating hot water, chilled water, conduits for power, security, and controls. The Nave restoration’s result is a space that provides a comfortable environment for students and staff alike to plan, read, and study.

Technical Statistics

OWNER: Yale University
PROJECT NAME: Sterling Memorial Library Nave Restoration
INDUSTRIES: Education, Arts & Culture
AWARDS: 2016 ACEC NY Engineering Excellence Gold Award, 2015 ENR New England Regional Cultural Project Award
Yale Sterling Memorial Library