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A Video Tour of Harvard’s Healthiest Building

Take a virtual look inside the Science and Engineering Complex at Harvard University

MaryBeth DiDonna

The Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) wanted to conceive of a building that would not only reinforce its commitment to sustainable design, but also be the “healthiest building on campus.”  The resulting 544,000-square-foot Science and Engineering Complex (SEC) has earned both LEED Platinum and Living Building Challenge (LBC) Petal certification in Materials, Beauty, and Equity—an unprecedented feat for a building of its size.  Read more in our July 2021 article, "Designing Harvard’s Healthiest Building."

A new film produced by the LA-based studio Nephew takes viewers on a tour inside and around Behnisch Architekten's Science and Engineering Complex (SEC) at Harvard, which opened to students for the first time this fall, and which was recently recognized with the 2021 SEFA Lab of the Year award. Architects Matt Noblett and Stefan Behnisch, as well as Harvard faculty including the dean of the John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, discuss the building’s integrated design approach, which combines outlooks on sustainability, the human experience, and interdisciplinary learning. Take a peek inside the wide range of gathering and educational spaces throughout the airy, light-infused complex, which Stefan Behnisch calls a “science building for the future.” As Harvard’s first major building project in Allston, the new facility sets the tone—both aesthetically and programmatically—for a new type of holistic, 21st-century campus.