HHL Architects was engaged by Cornell University in March 2010 to prepare this study. This document provides a summary of options studied which attempt to provide an “accessible path of travel”, primarily in an east-west (up-down the hill) direction, into and through Willard Straight Hall (The Straight) from The Straight parking lot, to-from Ho Plaza.
The following is the original “PROJECT GOAL” as stated in the
December 1, 2009 Request for Proposal issued by Cornell University:
Cornell University is seeking to improve ADA accessibility to its central campus. The goal of this project is to understand whether an accessible path of travel can be created within and through Cornell’s student union building Willard Straight Hall (The Straight). A comprehensive feasibility study will identify various options for creating an accessible path of travel from the parking lot at ground level on the west side to the 4th floor Ho Plaza entrance/exit and to the Dean of Students and Student Activities offices.
Cornell University is seeking proposals for a full comprehensive study for creating an accessible path of travel to all floors within The Straight. The existing The Straight freight elevator is required for existing building functions it cannot be replaced with a passenger elevator. This study will review and analyze the conceptual elevator component that was developed during the University Health Services Facility project, and explore new interior and exterior elevator options.
Additionally, the RFP requested specific “scope of work” elements to be considered:
Review and analyze the conceptual elevator component that was developed during the University Health Services Facility project, and explore new interior and exterior elevator options.
This Study will identify three or four options that could be implemented incrementally to progressively create an accessible path of travel through the building. Presentation of this phased approach will contain the Architect’s Opinion of Probable Cost for each option.
Meet with the Project Manager and the key stakeholder from Cornell University Facilities Services Maintenance Management to gather program information and understand project requirements, processes, objectives, and needs.
Visit the project site to understand existing: building conditions, complex traffic patterns, and archaic building construction.
The Study shall describe the renovations necessary to accommodate the created path of travel with work durations; and include the Architect’s Opinion of Probable Cost for each option.
To improve accessible means of egress for people with disabilities – an essential goal of this study – standby power (the ability for first responders to use the only egress available for wheelchair users in case of a power outage) is an addition suggested for the elevators and vertical lifts identified in all options. When an option is selected, safe areas (Areas of Refuge) will also be identified so that people with disabilities will wait for first responders for further evacuation. The cost for standby power system is not included in these recommendations.