Harvard University, Cambridge, MA / John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum Renovations, Kennedy School of Government
ARC designed the Forum in 1978 as an internal focus for the Kennedy School of Government, providing a sense of place for this then new graduate school. During the day, the Forum serves as the lobby, the dining facility, the lounge, group study space and the central vertical circulation for the school. In the evenings, the space is often transformed into an amphitheater and broadcast studio for national and international speakers and events. Akin to the Greek Agora and the Roman Forum – it is the heart and soul of the Kennedy School’s Institute of Politics.
In 2002, ARC renovated the Forum to upgrade the existing multi-use assembly space in order to further the distinct interactive quality of the space. The goal was to facilitate a smooth day-to-night transformation. While new curtains, backdrops and lighting aid in creating transitions, improved technology enhances its national and global broadcasting capabilities. The renovated and rededicated “John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum” offers multiple seating at three levels for hosting debates, television broadcasts and other events, supporting the vital connection between the School and the real world of politics and international affairs.
Modernization Awards 2006, Citation of Excellence, Buildings Magazine / International Illumination Design Awards 1998, Illumination Engineering Society of North America
Project photography by Warren Patterson
"My favorite place at Harvard is the [ARCO] Forum for Public Affairs at the Kennedy School of Government...the [ARCO] Forum has become one of the most functional, most envied, and most copied rooms in contemporary university architecture. It is also, in my view, among the most handsome."
Albert Carnesale, Former Dean of the Kennedy School, Provost of Harvard University