October 5, 1999
Volume 46
Number 6

Plans for Hamilton Village

Two architectural firms--Patkau Architects of Vancouver, Canada and Kieran, Tim berlake & Harris of Philadelphia--have been selected by the University to shape the future of Hamilton Village, the area formerly known as Superblock.

They will be responsible for developing plans for the northwest quadrant of Hamilton Village, defined as the area bordered by Walnut Street, 39th Street, Locust Walk, and 40th Street, as part of the University's $300 million Housing & Dining Renewal Project. These winning firms were selected from a group of internationally-renowned firms who presented their submissions to Penn this summer.

All of the competition designs will be on display for public viewing this month, the Provost's Office announced. Their announcement said:

"Patkau's winning submission for two new College Houses featured elegant and efficient student suites within low-rise buildings that hug sculpted courtyards, which will yield 700 new rentable bedspaces. Kieran, Timberlake & Harris demonstrated many promising ideas for the reconceptualization of the high-rise Hamilton College House at 3901 Locust Walk. The firm will conduct a feasibility study to determine if the tower can be divided to create two College Houses, each with an occupancy of around 500 residents, that feature separate lobbies, elevators, and public spaces. As for the student rooms, single bedrooms and kitchens within each unit are highly desirable.

"Once the Hamilton Village low-rise buildings are constructed, they will serve, for approximately four years, as swing space for each of the present College Houses as they undergo major renovation.

"One proposed low-rise house might utilize land directly north of Hamilton College House and consist of several buildings that face one another, creating an intimate space between Locust Walk and Walnut Street with multiple points of entry into its courtyard.

"Another proposed low-rise house might consist of buildings that form a quadrangle around an inner courtyard on land west of Hamilton College House."

Retail or office space could be included on the ground floor along 40th Street, and this House could contain a Visual Arts hub that has been proposed for the "practice, study, and enjoyment of the visual arts in all media, especially video, film, photography, painting, sculpture, printmaking and architecture."

Free Library: The announcement also said the Free Library of Philadelphia will be preserved--either in its present building or within the new construction, according to the wishes of Library.

 Endowing Chairs:

A Domino Effect at Psych

In 1977, the School of Medicine awarded its Stuart and Emily Mudd Professorship of Human Behavior to Dr. Karl Rickels, a professor of psychiatry and pharmacology known for his research in psychopharmacology and chem-ical dependency, and for the treament of anxiety, depression, panic disorder and premenstrual syndrome.

The Mudd chair he holds had been given to the University by two prestigious medical faculty members known for their far-reaching contributions both in basic science (Dr. Stuart Mudd was a noted microbiologist) and in the delivery of what today would be summed up as family health-including Dr. Emily Mudd's founding of the Marriage Council of Philadelphia (since renamed the Penn Council for Relationships).

Dr. Rickels has now redoubled the tradition by endowing the second of two chairs in psychiatry. The first honors his father, Karl E. Rickels, and the newer one honors his wife, Linda. Both Rickels chairs' first incumbents are announced here, along with holders of two other prestigious chairs in psychiatry, the Kenneth Appel and Ruth Meltzer professorships.

Director of Wharton E-Commerce Forum: Dr. Gerrity

The Wharton School's former dean, Dr. Thomas P. Gerrity, is the new director of the Wharton Forum on Electronic Commerce, a business-academic partnership set up in 1996 to focus on e-business.

Dr. Gerrity, who headed the School from 1990 until this past June, was an early pioneer in the strategic application of technology. As founder and CEO of the Index Group, he built one of the world's leading consulting firms in information technology and management before joining Penn.

The Forum created at Wharton during his deanship brings together corporate leaders from diverse industries and a team of more than 50 Wharton faculty members from across various disciplines to share insights and discuss research on a range of e-commerce issues. Currently on the research agenda: studies on web-based competition, Internet pricing strategies, emerging new models for web-based enterprises, business-to-business e-commerce and online purchasing behavior. Among its other initiatives, the Forum established the Wharton Virtual Test Market, which now has more than 18,000 panel members around the globe participating in a large-scale behavioral study of Internet usage.

The appointment of Dr. Gerrity "further signals the Wharton School's major commitment to e-commerce and technology-related initiatives," said the School announcement. Along with some 50 existing course offerings related to e-commerce, Wharton now has an explicit course on the subject, called "Internet Entrepreneurship," and plans to initiate more new degree and non-degree programs related to e-commerce in the coming year.

 Council October 13: Financial Aid

Student financial aid-including a report by President Judith Rodin on the Trustee Challenge to increase endowment-is on the agenda for the University Council's October 13 meeting, 4-6 p.m. in McClelland Hall, the Quad.

Also scheduled are five reports of Council Committees, one of which, International Relations, appeared in Almanac April 20. The remaining four are in this week's center pullout (Communications, Community Relations, Pluralism, and Student Affairs).

Observers may register their interest in attending by calling the Office of the Secretary in advance, (215) 898-7005.

Almanac, Vol. 46, No. 6, October 5, 1999