The Howard Hughes Medical Institute and Janelia Farm Research Campus

THE HOWARD HUGHES MEDICAL INSTITUTE AND JANELIA FARM RESEARCH CAMPUS

Howard Hughes, an aviator, engineer, industrialist and philanthropist became one of the world’s wealthiest individuals at the age of 19 after inheriting the bulk of the Hughes Tool Company that was founded by his father in 1909. It is believed that the proximity of the deaths of his parents, (his mother in 1922 and his father in 1924) prompted Hughes to create a medical research laboratory dedicated to the Howard Hughes, an aviator, engineer, industrialist and philanthropist became one of the world’s wealthiest individuals at the age of 19 after inheriting the bulk of the Hughes Tool Company that was founded by his father in 1909. It is believed that the proximity of the deaths of his parents, (his mother in 1922 and his father in 1924) prompted Hughes to create a medical research laboratory dedicated to the understanding of the “genesis of life itself.” In 1953, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) in Chevy Chase, Maryland, was formed with the express goal of basic biomedical research.

Today, that goal is being carried out at the HHMI Janelia Farm Research Campus in Loudoun County, Virginia, situated on 689 acres of verdant countryside on the southern bank of the Potomac River, just 30 road miles from Washington, D. C. Serving as an intellectual hub for up to several hundred scientists from diverse disciplines, Janelia Farm supports the idea of collaborative teams working together to solve biological problems. This culture of ‘academic freedom’ allows scientists to pursue long-term projects that could not be accommodated within a standard grant proposal.

The architectural concept of Janelia included two central objectives – collaboration and flexibility.

BACK TO LASKER/IRRF

“It is a building about nature. Nature is the centerpiece of research at Janelia Farm, and the building follows that idea.”

— Rafael Viñoly, Architect

Photo courtesy of Larry Donoso