Memorial Hall / Lowell Hall Complex

45 Quincy Street Cambridge, MA 02138
Phone: 617.496.4595, Fax: 617.495.2420

Loker Commons

Photo of Loker Commons entrance

History of the Lower Level

From the time of completion, for more than six decades, utilization of Memorial Hall's lower level was limited to kitchen, storage and mechanical space and restrooms. In 1940, the area beneath Sanders theatre was rebuilt to house a new Psycho Acoustic Laboratory which did secret research on noise reduction and communications in combat vehicles and aircraft. The lower level of Memorial Hall served as the locale for B.F. Skinner's early experiments with conditioned behavior, and early sonar experimentation. In 1946, the rest of the lower level was renovated to provide laboratories, an animal room, classrooms, a lecture hall, and a library for the newly reorganized psychology department, which remained there until 1964 when William James Hall was completed. Thereafter, until the opening of Loker Commons in 1996, approximately twenty student organizations and administrative units maintained offices under the hall while WHRB operated in the east end of the lower level.

Loker Commons was reimagined and renovated in 2007, resulting in the creation of the Cambridge Queen's Head Pub, Fly-by meal service, and spaces dedicated to music practice. It is also houses several classrooms and the Memorial Hall Administrative Office.

Photo credit: Steve Rosenthal