Honor - SCUP Excellence in Planning for a District or Campus Component

Washington University in St. Louis

East End Transformation of the Danforth Campus
Washington University in St. Louis - East End Transformation of the Danforth Campus
Jury Comments
“this ambitious overall plan beautifully reaches back to the history of the campus . . . putting parking underground and creating a new green with surrounding buildings is brilliant . . . wonderful and inspiring”


    • Site – 18 acres; Building – 713,300 gsf (including 790-space garage)
    • The project creates a new front door to the university, replaces roads and surface parking lots with green space, and strengthens academic connections.
    • The Kemper Art Museum’s addition features a faceted stainless steel exterior that reflects its surroundings and complements Weil Hall’s glass façade.
    • The green wall in Weil Hall provides a biophilic connection and improves indoor air quality.
    • PV panels provide renewable energy to Hillman Hall’s rooftop.
    • Jubel Hall’s flexible, loft-like research labs are complemented by collaborative spaces to foster interdisciplinary collaboration.
    • Hillman Hall’s garden and rooftop terrace provide outdoor gathering spaces with views of Brookings Hall.
    • Hillman Hall is LEED Platinum. All new buildings have been designed to achieve or exceed LEED Gold and aspire to LEED Platinum.


The East End Transformation is the most significant change to the campus in its 120-year history. The project encompasses over 18 acres of the Danforth Campus and adds six new buildings, expands the university’s world-class Kemper Museum, relocates 790 surface parking spaces underground, and creates an expansive new park. In support of the academic mission of the university, the design promotes connectedness and interdisciplinary collaboration across the schools of Social Work, Art and Architecture, Engineering, Arts and Sciences, and the Kemper Art Museum.

The plan builds upon a well-established history while addressing and celebrating contemporary issues and priorities, including sustainability, high-tech laboratories, inspiring academic space, and necessities including parking and the need to plan for future adaptive reuse. Critical to the university’s academic mission is teaching, research, and discovery. Five new academic buildings enable expansion of key academic programs and create opportunities for greater interdisciplinary collaboration among schools and departments.

The East End Transformation creates a new face to the university. The new gateway builds upon Cope and Stewardson’s 1900 Block Plan vision of Brookings Hall being the monument on the hilltop. Prior to the transformation, the beautiful tree-lined green space had been overtaken by surface parking lots with hundreds of cars in the foreground of Brookings Hall. The surface parking has been removed and placed underground. In its place, Tisch Park forms a welcoming, actively programmed open space, bracketed by new academic buildings framing views to the iconic Brookings Hall on the hill.

The project also includes a rich mix of student and campus support services. The Sumers Welcome Center receives campus visitors and houses the office of Admissions and Student Financial Services. The Schnuck Pavilion is a multi-use facility providing dining, alternative transportation support, and the Office of Sustainability. Makerspaces in Jubel and Weil Halls provide equipment and technologies to all students to take their ideas from concept to reality.

Project Team

Moore Ruble Yudell Architects and Planners; Mackey Mitchell Architects; Kieran Timberlake; BNIM; Perkins Eastman; Michael Vergason Landscape Architects