Carnegie Mellon University
April 28, 2016

Building Connections: Sherman and Joyce Bowie Scott Hall Opens Window to the World

Scott Hall

Walking across the Forbes Avenue Junction Hollow bridge toward Carnegie Mellon University, the view is changing.

The Sherman and Joyce Bowie Scott Hall, to be dedicated on April 30, provides both visual and intellectual stimulation, enhancing the College of Engineering's innovative culture and fostering interdisciplinary research.

Engineering always has had a "maker culture" of creating cutting-edge tools and products to benefit the modern world. With new lab space and new technologies, researchers and students can take that environment to a new level.

"Scott Hall will help us turn our maker culture into a maker ecosystem," said Engineering Dean James H. Garrett, Jr.

Like a puzzle piece, the building and its amenities connect fields of study and expand collaboration across CMU. Researchers and students have easier access to advanced technologies for turning ideas into reality.

The building is the new home for the Wilton E. Scott Institute for Energy Innovation, the Department of Biomedical Engineering, the Engineering Research Accelerator — formerly known as the Institute for Complex Engineered Systems — the Disruptive Health Technologies Institute and a nanotechnology research facility.

The 109,000-square-foot Scott Hall, designed by OFFICE 52 Architecture, has two main sections: the North Wing and the Claire and John Bertucci Nanotechnology Laboratory. They meet at the Arthur C. Ruge Atrium and the Collaboratory, a sweeping four-story space that connects the levels of the North Wing.

From Forbes Avenue, the North Wing is visible on angled white steel support columns strategically placed to avoid the utilities below. The glass, which creates the outer wall of the building, changes color as it reflects light from different angles throughout the day. As a nod to the nanofabrication work taking place within the walls, many of the windows include a design feature that represents a mathematical and nanoscience concept called photonic quasicrystal.

The Bertucci Nanotechnology Lab is tucked between Porter, Hamerschlag, Roberts and Wean halls, turning what was a small service and parking area into a large workspace. Its entrance is through a glass pavilion. Above the lab is a green roof with skylights to provide more space for work, camaraderie and relaxation inside and outside the building. The space is tied to the lawn of the Hornbostel Mall.

Within the lab is the 10,000-square-foot Eden Hall Foundation Nanofabrication Cleanroom, which will allow faculty and researchers to explore new avenues of nanoscience. Cleanrooms are tightly controlled environments that maintain concentrations of airborne particles within certain limits. The space will be completed this summer and fully operational in 2017.

With many other buildings nearby, Scott Hall becomes a new nexus on campus.

The Collaboratory and Ruge Atrium, which contains a café, are designed to encourage informal discussions to promote the types of collaborations that can lead to major breakthroughs.

"The building will physically bring together hundreds of faculty and students from a variety of disciplines, allowing them to work together in ways they had not been able to before," Garrett said.

Founder Facts

  • The Wilton E. Scott Institute for Energy Innovation is named after Sherman Scott's father. Both the Sherman and Joyce Bowie Scott Hall and the Wilton E. Scott Institute for Energy Innovation were funded by Sherman Scott and his wife Joyce Bowie Scott.
  • John and Claire Ruge Bertucci funded the Bertucci Nanotechnology Lab, and named the Ruge Atrium for Claire Bertucci's father, Arthur C. Ruge, who was a Carnegie Tech alumnus.
  • Sherman and Joyce Bowie Scott and John and Claire Ruge Bertucci are alumni who met at CMU.  
  • Joyce Bowie Scott, an alumna of the College of Fine Arts, is an artist at the J. Bowie Scott Studio. Several of her paintings will hang in Scott Hall.
  • Jonathan Rothberg, a CMU chemical engineering graduate, and his family have a café in the building, Rothberg's Roasters. Another Rothberg's Roasters is housed in the Hunt Library.
  • The cleanroom in Scott Hall was funded by the Eden Hall Foundation.
  • Scott Hall and Scott Institute were supported by the Richard King Mellon Foundation. The Swanson Family and other generous donors also contributed to make Scott Hall possible.