One Community=One Campus: Update on MIT framework and planning

July 02, 2018

Dear Colleagues,

Our campus is a dynamic and thriving part of Cambridge, where thousands of our talented students, staff, researchers, and faculty learn, work, and live. The MIT campus supports and defines our community, and we are writing to share an update on the campus planning framework and to invite your input.

In 2016, we as co-chairs of the MIT Building Committee charged Hashim Sarkis, dean of the School of Architecture + Planning, to help develop a framework for the planning of the West Campus. Our charge entailed defining the guiding principles to aid near-term decisions about emerging campus needs such as new undergraduate dormitories, and also empowering a larger and longer-term vision for the campus that would be developed over time. That exercise was not intended to be a detailed plan or schedule but rather a framework for the MIT community to think about how we can make best use of our campus, including but not only the West Campus, as needs and priorities change. Dean Sarkis assembled a group to review prior campus planning reports and engage many committees and offices on campus during that assessment; they also engaged with teams and reviewed related reports focused on the future of education and the campus plan for climate action.

The resulting framework was termed One Community = One Campus, or 1C1C, and is available here. Over the past two years, that framework has been helpful in the context of siting the Vassar Street dormitory now under construction, maintaining a site option for a future new building for Music, and in early planning of a West Campus Commons that would improve connections among the communities surrounding the DAPER athletic fields. Thus, this report also includes a West Campus update for 2016–2018.

Since this 1C1C framework was drafted, MIT has also launched and grown several internal efforts, including establishing the MIT Office of Sustainability, founding and growing Project Manus for connected campus makerspaces, updating MIT’s Plan for Climate Action and upgrading our Central Utilities Plant, initiating the renovation of W70 New House, opening W97 as the new Theater Arts building, and siting MIT’s Innovation & Entrepreneurship hub on the East Campus in Kendall Square. Those efforts were informed by 1C1C, and also reflect the many ways that we use our campus to learn and lead in a changing world.

MIT’s campus is both an anchor to our shared history and a pivot to our future. As we consider this 1C1C framework and basic principles for how we use and plan the MIT campus, including West Campus, we invite and appreciate your comments. Please send your input by August 31 to Jon Alvarez, director of the Office of Campus Planning.

Thank you,

Martin A. Schmidt
Israel Ruiz
Co-Chairs, MIT Building Committee