Harvey Ingham Science Hall and Fitch Hall
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Constructed in 1947 and designed by the prestigious architect, Eero Saarinen, Harvey Ingham and Fitch Halls are an excellent example of Saarinen's planning talent.
The buildings, constructed of brick masonry and simple steel and glass grid, sit along Forest Avenue at the north end of campus. Situated at right angles of one another, the two buildings are connected by what was the first skywalk in the city of Des Moines. Because of the building's program and need for adaptable space, Saarinen designed a reinforced concrete curtain wall that would permit a wide range of interior spatial configurations.
In addition, Saarinen created the buildings' two auditoriums as one interlocked grouping or single mass. This allowed not only for reduced building cubage, but also for increased ease of circulation space. Saarinen also carefully planned the structure by accounting for the building's program requirements. By allotting for the building's Chemistry labs on the top floors and Physics classrooms on the ground level, the problems of ventilation and vibration issues were more easily resolved.
"A University Campus Plan Underway for Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa, Saarinen, Swanson and Saarinen, Architects." Architectural Record 102 (December 1947): 71-87.