Yale University School of Forestry & Environmental Science
Renewal, regrowth & regeneration
A devastating 2016 fire destroyed the 80+ year-old camp, which was comprised of three primary buildings — two bunkhouses and a common building with kitchen, dining space and faculty bunkrooms. CWA took inspiration from none other than Thomas Jefferson in recreating Yale’s beloved Myers Forest camp.
Jefferson famously conceived the Academical Village at the University of Virginia as a collaborative environment in which students and faculty could live and learn from one another. The Yale-Myers camp achieves similar ends, albeit in more humble, rural surroundings.
By subtly reconfiguring the layout of the camp, CWA created a better-defined space around which the buildings are organized. Centering the common dining building at the end, We replicated one of the bunkhouses in a slightly different location, swapping places with its neighboring bunkhouse, which was expanded, to create an endpoint as well as a better relationship to the outdoor classroom pavilion on the opposite side of the green.
With the common dining building centered at the end, the four buildings define a central “green” around which a unifying porch provides access to virtually all of the interior spaces. Each of the flanking buildings, along with their porches, step down the gently sloping green that calls for sunny lounging or Frisbee games.
Replicating the original style of the buildings was never in question. However, with the slate wiped clean and Yale’s desire to add a fourth building for faculty bunkrooms, office and more classroom space, CWA took the opportunity to create a more definitive, if modest, campus in the woods.
The Yale-Myers Forest is a 7,800-acre forest owned by Yale University and administered by the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies. Since the 1930s, the Yale-Myers Camp has provided housing, classrooms and support facilities to faculty and students who use the forest for teaching and research.
Nuts & Bolts
The new fieldstone fireplace integrates original stone salvaged from the fire.
What You Don’t See
Exhaust fans on the roof – They are concealed by barn inspired ventilators.
Going through school through the woods.