Welcome to the Archives of the Paul Rudolph Heritage Foundation. The purpose of this online database is to function as a tool for scholars, students, architects, preservationists, journalists and other interested parties. The archive consists of photographs, slides, articles and publications from Rudolph’s lifetime; physical drawings and models; personal photos and memorabilia; and contemporary photographs and articles.

Image rights are the responsibility of the user. Unless otherwise noted, images should be credited to the Paul Rudolph Heritage Foundation. Please speak with a representative of the Paul Rudolph Heritage Foundation before publishing photographs. Drawings, sketches and other materials at the Library of Congress are in the public domain, however the digital scan or photograph of the item still belongs to its creator. The copyright of any other items remains with the estate of Paul Rudolph and Ernst Wagner, founder of the Paul Rudolph Heritage Foundation.

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LOCATION
Address: 285 Old Westport Road
City: North Dartmouth
State: Massachusetts
Zip Code: 12747
Nation: United States
Google Maps Address: 41.6291, -71.00641

STATUS
Type: Master Plan / Academic
Status: Built, Altered

TECHNICAL DATA
Date(s): 1963
Site Area:
Floor Area:
Height:
Floors (Above Ground):
Building Cost:

PROFESSIONAL TEAM
Client:
Architect: Paul Rudolph
Associate Architect: Desmond and Lord
Landscape:
Structural:
MEP:
QS/PM:

SUPPLIERS
Contractor:
Subcontractor(s):

New Campus for Southeastern Massachusetts Technological Institute (now UMass Dartmouth)

SMTI juxtaposes a pedestrian campus defined by earth mounds with an encircling parking system. A spiraling mall created by buildings organizes the heart of the complex. The campus is intended to be a single building utilizing a single structural-mechanical system, to be constructed of one material. The pedestrian circulation is emphasized in an effort to humanize a campus which will probably grow markedly.
— Paul Rudolph in Moholy-Nagy, Sibyl, and Gerhard Schwab. The Architecture of Paul Rudolph. New York: Praeger, 1970. P. 152
The central organization of this campus is purposely a moving, or dynamic, one. That’s the very nature of what is needed, as I see it. When one gets beyond the spiraling mall, with its defining buildings, walks, terraces, plantings, etc., then other architects will take over, and indeed they already have. In that sense, I’ve thought of it as similar to Thomas Jefferson’s University of Virginia, wherein he made a fixed, well-defined, marvelous central core for the campus. But, beyond the core, other architects took over, building very inferior structures. The idea, the central core, must be strong enough as a center of the campus, and other architects will add on to that. But the cohesiveness of the center remains intact.
— Paul Rudolph in Cook, John Wesley. Conversations with Architects : Philip Johnson, Kevin Roche, Paul Rudolph, Bertrand Goldberg, Morris Lapidus, Louis Kahn, Charles Moore, Robert Venturi & Denise Scott Brown. New York: Praeger, 1973. p. 91
SMU is a new commuter campus on a very large piece of land well removed from other structures. Its design started with Jefferson’s University of Virginia and his defined “lawn” surrounded by pavilions connected with covered walks on two sides with the rotunda addressing the view on the opposite side. SMU’s “lawn” is a spiralling space, defined by a series of connected buildings on opposites sides, with a narrowed entry at one end and an open ended space at the other where the spiral becomes much larger, is marked by a campanile, and turns towards the lake. This central pedestrian complex was set in a mile diameter access drive connecting to an inner ring of parking. I got fired before the “spiral” was finished but fortunately I had some friends in other architectual offices who saw it through.

Desmond and Lord?

Desmond and Lord, yes - they believed in the scheme and carried out most of the buildings which define the central space.
— Paul Rudolph in Davern, Jeanne M. "A Conversation with Paul Rudolph." Architectural Record 170 (March 1982): 90-97
From my viewpoint the idea of the campus is that the spines are there and that they might be fleshed out in many different ways, but that the principle of it being one building, i.e. connected, and that the spaces in between are thereby formed on a relatively large scale. You see, I am back to the Piazza San Marco which doesn’t have a tree in sight, and all buildings are literally connected with all other buildings, and there are many different uses, and there is focus, a tremendous sense of space, and scale. It remains the greatest outdoor living room in Europe, I believe. Its vitality is there, it has little to do with style, it has little to do with materials, it has to do with the psychology of architectural space.
I do not think it is generally recognized how different conceptually the SMTI campus is. That the whole of America, almost the whole of America, is based on the freestanding building in a plane of space, and that the space in between is simply there. It has no use, no real meaning. And that is a tragedy because the European example is the exact opposite. It took many buildings, built over great length of time, and by placement formed a greater whole, a social whole if you will. And we haven’t got the hang of it. But I would insist that the basic thinking at SMTI it is the exact opposite. I don’t mean stylistically, which it may or may not be but — well, it is different of course, but that is not the real point. The real point is that the buildings are connected to form a greater whole, and that whole is a social entity, and that entity is not yet fully developed.
— Paul Rudolph in "Sub Rosa: Interview with Paul Rudolph". Ed. Lasse B. Antonsen, January 12, 1996

DRAWINGS - Design Drawings / Renderings

DRAWINGS - Construction Drawings

DRAWINGS - Shop Drawings

PHOTOS - Project Model

PHOTOS - During Construction

PHOTOS - Completed Project

PHOTOS - Current Conditions

LINKS FOR MORE INFORMATION

RELATED DOWNLOADS

PROJECT BIBLIOGRAPHY