A user’s perspective: the ‘open’ lab

Designers often associate the term “open lab” with ballroom style suites created for mobility and flexibility among larger user groups. Examples of this typology include the chemistry labs of the Chevron Annex at the University of Pittsburgh and the multi-disciplinary suites of the Life Science Laboratories at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Principle Investigators, on the other hand, may have a different interpretation of the term. In recent correspondence, Professor Jeremy Levy of the University of Pittsburgh / Pittsburgh Quantum Institute shared a link to his lab’s webpage (www.levylab.org) pointing out how “open” his lab is.


This streetview link provides a full user controlled walk-through of the lab including the isolated fridge rooms on the lower level and multi-function spaces on the upper. The labs, designed by Wilson Architects, are part of the NIST Funded Mid-Campus Complex Renovations. While the suite is dedicated to Professor Levy, he has “opened” his lab to an online community and is currently assisting other PQI faculty in the “opening” of their spaces.  As lab designers, we are proud to see our work published in this unique method and are looking forward to watching this trend grow.

Navigation Hint: Take the elevator to get to the lower level. Fridges are located behind closed doors.

Leave a Reply