"We love our new Kroon Hall. It is not only a feast for the eyes but a joy in which to work. Thank you for your inspired vision and execution." – James Gustave Speth, Former Dean, School of Forestry & Environmental Studies
Kroon Hall is Yale's greenest building, LEED Platinum certified, and a flagship for the university’s commitment to sustainable ideals. It was designed to use 50 percent of the energy of a comparably-sized, efficient modern building. The new home for the School of Forestry & Environmental Studies joins with two adjacent buildings to create a unified campus within a campus, establishing a highly visible center for the study of the environment at Yale.
Kroon Hall has received extensive media attention since opening in 2009 as well as 18 design awards, among them a Top 10 green building award from the AIA Committee on the Environment and a design award from the Royal Institute of British Architects. The Architects’ Journal chose Kroon as its building of the year.
Constructed of stone, concrete, steel, and glass, it is sited between two neo-Gothic buildings on Yale's Science Hill. It forms two new courtyards, reintroducing the collegiate urban fabric of Yale’s core campus to Science Hill. The gabled roof recalls its neighbors while integrating photovoltaic solar collectors and skylights. The end walls are glass with wooden screens that offer sheltered views in both directions. The top floor is a cathedral space housing a conference center with large lecture hall, classrooms, and a cafe. The middle floors accommodate faculty offices, while the bottom floor has more classrooms and a library that lead out to the lower courtyard.
The Platinum Rating from the U. S. Green Building Council is the highest attainable. Sustainable features include solar photovoltaic panels, ground source heat pumps, displacement air systems, high thermal retention, daylight harvesting, energy recovering ventilation, a rainwater collection and cleansing pond, a green roof, and recycled, local, and sustainable building materials. Centerbrook as Executive Architect collaborated on the project with the Design Architects, Hopkins Architects of London and an all-star team of consultants including ARUP engineers, atelier 10, Nitsch engineering, Kalin Associates, and Olin Partnership.
Photography © Morley von Sternberg; Derek Hayn, Centerbrook