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Homer Research Laboratories (Mountaintop Campus)
Lehigh acquired this cluster of research laboratories perched atop South Mountain from Bethlehem Steel. Sited amid 75 sylvan acres, the Homer Laboratories contained 475,000 square feet and cost $35 million. Fitted at regular intervals with thick steel “explosion shields,” they inspired one local newspaper to compare them to “fortifications built along Maginot Line specifications.” But although they are pragmatic, unornamented structures, the labs are also well proportioned and handsomely detailed, showing the hand of Voorhees, Walker, Smith, Smith and Haines, successors to the architects of the incomparable New York Telephone Building in lower Manhattan. Most impressive of the laboratories is Iacocca Hall (Building A) at 111 Research Drive, a sleek tower of blue glass walls that suggests a rectangular crystal with chamfered corners.
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