Hopkins Center Renovation and Expansion

About the Project

Dartmouth is actively planning to redesign and expand the Hopkins Center for the Arts. This project, a major component of The Call to Lead: a Campaign for Dartmouth, "is another important chapter in enacting our vision to make the arts an essential aspect of any academic experience," says President Phil Hanlon '77. "It will offer a wealth of new opportunities for our students and the community well beyond."

The world-renowned design firm Snøhetta has been hired to develop plans to expand the Hop's existing physical footprint, which is currently nearly 175,000 square feet, and enhance the flow and function of interior and exterior spaces.

The Hop, originally designed by Wallace K. Harrison and opened in 1962, is located in Dartmouth's Arts District which also includes the Black Family Visual Arts Center, completed in 2012 by Machado Silvetti, and the Hood Museum of Art, redesigned by Tod Williams and Billie Tsien Architects in 2019. "The Hop has long served as a leader in the arts, bringing the voices of an incredible range of artists to our region and cultivating an academic experience that positions creativity at its core. As we look to the future, we are committed to establishing new spaces and opportunities that will enable artistic ideas to flourish and be realized within our community," said Mary Lou Aleskie, the Howard L. Gilman '44 Director of the Hopkins Center for the Arts.

As describe in a project announcement, "the design development process is particularly focused on ensuring Dartmouth's ability to produce works onsite, recognizing the evolving needs of student creators and visiting artists, and on enhancing the audience experience overall." Design priorities include:

  • Incorporation of state-of-the-art technologies that will allow the Hop to document, share, and broadcast Dartmouth-originated works across the world;
  • Enhancements to community, social, and study spaces, including the beloved Top of the Hop;
  • Enhancing acoustics, flow, and wayfinding throughout the building;
  • Substantive upgrades to rehearsal rooms;
  • Improvements to accessibility;
  • Addressing infrastructure and deferred maintenance for mechanical, electrical and life safety systems.

Major Project Milestones

  • Complete Schematic Design phase – July, 2021
  • Complete Design Documents – Summer, 2022
  • Commence construction – Fall, 2022