Working alongside Northeastern University, Payette recently conducted a Post Occupancy Evaluation (POE) for the new Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex I (ISEC I) at Northeastern University. With Phase II currently in design, it was important to obtain valuable feedback on Phase I before we started the planning and programming of Phase II. Therefore, we timed the POE survey and in-person interviews for this past spring which marks one year since the opening of the building.
The written survey ran for two weeks in March and included responses to specific questions from faculty and staff. The POE team, a group from Payette who were not involved in the design of the project, also interviewed faculty and staff in May. Survey questions ranged from thermal comfort levels to acoustics and a deep dive into how the laboratories and classrooms were working for the building’s users. Two questions generated the most original answers and I don’t think any POE is complete without them:
What are your three favorite things about the building?
What three changes would you make to the building?
Learning how the users occupy the space is often valuable, including learning where most people spend their time:
The major thing we learned from the survey is that over 70% of the respondents are satisfied with the building. Most of the comments indicated that the building, especially the light-filled atrium, is impressive and the building is often used to showcase research to visitors. The faculty we interviewed really appreciated having labs and offices near each other. The vast majority of survey comments praised the natural light and openness throughout the building. Everyone is happy with the lab spaces that were custom-designed for their respective groups.
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