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Annenberg Public Policy Center: A Dedication and Opening
November 10, 2009, Volume 56, No. 11

“A giant in the field of modern architecture” was how President Amy Gutmann described the man who designed the building “which captures the spirit of Lee and Walter Annenberg... and the spirit of Penn.” The new home of APPC is nestled between The ARCH to its south, and Addams Hall to its north, with the Annenberg School directly west beyond the plaza which transitions from the limestone exterior of the school to the glass exterior of APPC. The double-skinned glass and wood exterior was designed to complement the nearby buildings and conserve energy.

The open floor plan and three-story atrium link all spaces in the new building, from the Agora on the first floor, to the skylit fourth floor lounge. The Agora has maple wood chosen for its resilience and stability; 82 degree water is pumped below the floor, providing a radiant layer of heat; a BASWAphon (pumice and plaster) ceiling allows sound to travel through rather than reverberate, and wall slats are designed to absorb sound.

The recently completed building houses the Leonore Annenberg Institute  for Civics, the Leonore Annenberg Scholarship and School Funds, the National Annenberg Election Survey and National Annenberg Judicial Election Survey, the Coding of Health and Media Project, the Institute for the Study of Citizens and Politics, the Annenberg Sex and Media Studies, the Annenberg Center for the Advanced Study of Communication, and the Annenberg School’s Center for Global Communication Studies and Institute for Public Service.


Fumihiko Maki, (above) the award-winning architect of the Annenberg Public Policy Center (at right).
Mr. Maki was honored last week: he gave the Leonore Annenberg Lecture in Public Service and Global Understanding—Making the Annenberg Public Policy Center: From Concept to Realization, and his portrait was one of two unveiled at the building’s opening. The other portrait was a rendering of the donors, Walter and Leonore Annenberg.


Photographs by Marguerite F. Miller


Joining President Amy Gutmann (far right) and architect Fumihiko Maki, at the dedication of the new home of the APPC were Mrs. Annenberg’s daughter, Penn alumna, Diane and her husband, Howard Deshong, to the left and right of Annenberg School for Communication Dean Michael X. delli Carpini, and Kathleen Hall Jamieson, director of the Annenberg Public Policy Center (far left).


Almanac - November 10, 2009, Volume 56, No. 11