Free Project Support from WoodWorks – Learn more

Wellesley College Science Complex

Wellesley, MA
  • Bldg system

    Mass Timber

  • No. Of Stories


  • Sq. footage


In 1870, the founder of Wellesley College said he thought women should be “educated in the midst of beauty,” and his philosophy certainly rings true for this new Science Complex. The ambitious project transformed the college's existing facility with a careful mix of removal, renovation, and addition, with mass timber providing the main structure for the expansion. Designers created a series of multi-story pavilions with classrooms, labs, and breakout areas that promote collaboration and provide strong visual connections to both indoor and outdoor spaces. A timber portal frames the entrance leading into the heart of the addition, the Chao Foundation Innovation Hub, built with GLT decking over glulam beams and columns. Exposed wood in this “indoor main street” creates a warm and welcoming environment for students, faculty, and visitors. The LEED Platinum project confirms Wellesley’s commitment to its carbon and energy-efficiency goals. After previously consuming more energy than any other building on campus, the new Science Complex is now among the most efficient.

Watch a short one-minute video of this project, which was selected as a 2023 Wood Design Awards winner. View the full award gallery here.

  • Construction Type:


  • Building Type:


  • Material Types:

    Mass Timber, Cross-Laminated Timber (CLT), Glue-Laminated Timber (GLT or glulam)

Companies Involved:
Need help with your own project?

WoodWorks can help find a team, technical details, and more.