How can we give a unified, contemporary identity to a revered campus neighborhood?
Designed by Cope and Stewardson in 1900, the Danforth Campus at Washington University in St. Louis is defined by Collegiate Gothic buildings, landscaped quadrangles, and pathways that encourage academic connections in a beautiful park-like setting. Over time, Danforth's East End of campus had become plagued by roads and parking lots, interrupting this original planning vision. In 2015, Washington University embarked on a major campaign to transform the East End into a vibrant and inviting gateway to the university. KieranTimberlake has designed four of the eight buildings in this capital campaign, which are currently under construction and scheduled for completion in 2019.
HIGHLIGHTING ART AND ARCHITECTURE
Weil Hall, a new architecture, art, and design building for the Sam Fox School, embodies the university's commitment to creativity in the 21st century. The new building will include flexible, naturally lit lofts for classes and studios, all of which will be positioned around a digital fabrication shop and a light-filled central courtyard. In centering its work spaces around the fabrication shop and courtyard, Weil Hall's design will inspire the university's multidisciplinary scholarship, creative activity, and innovative research.
An expansion to the Kemper Art Museum will increase exhibition space and allow the museum to permanently display a larger portion of its world-class collection. The gallery's faceted, stainless steel exterior will reflect the campus landscape and sky while the double-height, glass-lined lobby will open up an introverted building and offer expansive views of Brookings Hall, the campus's landmark building, as well as the museum's sculpture garden and Tisch Park, a new green space that will replace much of the East End's surface parking lots.
The Sumers Welcome Center, a new building for Undergraduate Admissions and Student Financial Services, will be the first stop for visitors and prospective students. The glass-enclosed building was designed to put the Welcome Center's activity on display in addition to giving visitors upfront, personal views of the school's distinct landscape, including the new Tisch Park, and Brookings Hall.
The Schnuck Pavilion will house a large café and a bike hub in addition to the university's Environmental Studies Program and Office of Sustainability. A new underground parking garage will allow the nearly six acres of impervious surface parking to be replaced with lawns, trees, and plantings. It will also orient visitors, increase access to the new East End, and promote low-carbon transportation by providing electric vehicle charging stations, designated car share parking, and an on-campus bus stop.
Each of these projects is faithful to the original Cope and Stewardson plan, yet contemporary in their materials, technology, and approach to sustainability. By emphasizing long-term flexibility, sustainability, and welcome, the newly built spaces will ensure a unified and well-connected East End for generations to come.