Slideshow: What’s Happening at Sills Hall

By Bowdoin News
Sills Hall, a hub for the study of languages and cinema, has been largely untouched, beyond routine maintenance, since its original construction in 1950.
The College engaged HGA, the firm behind Barry Mills Hall and the John and Lile Gibbons Center for Arctic Studies, to create a design that preserves the original footprint of the McKim, Mead, & White building while reimagining the interior space to bring in more natural light, improve accessibility, introduce flexible classrooms, and offer more opportunities for intellectual exchange.

The renovation includes the addition of an elevator, which will be located near the entrance, and also addresses aging mechanical, plumbing, and electrical systems for improved efficiency and thermal comfort. The windows and all exterior trim will be removed and replaced to match the originals.

The new floorplans include nine classrooms and twenty-two faculty offices for Romance languages, German, Russian, and classics. The sloped floor of Smith Auditorium has been removed in favor of a flat floor system to create a lower level for classrooms and an upper level for faculty offices and student-faculty collaboration.

The exterior plans feature a below-grade patio to bring southern daylight exposure to the garden level of the building and a new, universal-design-inspired primary entry from Cleaveland Quad.

Construction is underway and is expected to be complete in May 2025.