Center for Birds and Biodiversity | Cornell University | Ithaca, New York

90,000 SF | bio-acoustics labs | technical chemistry labs | library | orientation theatre | administrative offices | nature observatory
Inspired by birds in flight, fish in the water and the natural surroundings, this very large wood-clad structure is designed to seem small and to sit gently in the delicate natural landscape of ponds, trees, woodland and wetland. There are only partial views, adding mystery and making the building seem smaller. A scientific research center, a study center, a visitors center, a nature center, a natural museum, a nature preserve and sanctuary; all are in and around this 90,000 square foot building perched precariously in acres of protected wetlands. Expanses of windows rise and fall with the sloping roofs, affording views and vistas to the natural and delicately constructed landscape.