University of Kansas Capitol Federal Hall
Lawrence, Kan.
Best Project

Owner University of Kansas School of Business
Lead Design Gensler
Architect-of-Record Gastinger Walker&
Civil Engineer SK Design Group Inc.
Structural Engineer Bob D. Campbell & Co.
MEP Engineer W.L. Cassell & Associates Inc.
General Contractor JE Dunn Construction Group

Capitol Federal Hall at the University of Kansas is a 167,000-sq-ft building that houses the university’s School of Business. It rises four floors above grade and is clad in precast concrete, weathered-steel and high-performance glazing. Materials were carefully curated to ensure that the new building was both forward thinking and contextually sensitive. Its centerpiece is a four-story atrium with a sculptural stair that serves as the building’s primary means of circulation.

A 350-seat auditorium also can be used as a tornado shelter to house the building’s entire population. The windowless structure was clad in weathered steel and covered with a planted red-sedum roof, in keeping with a long-standing campus tradition of red roofs.

The interior of the main building was designed to serve a diverse group of faculty with widely different teaching styles. The 20 classrooms are arranged so that each can easily be realigned for instructional needs. The layouts include large and small lecture rooms, collaborative team rooms and larger-lecture auditoriums.

The building is located across the street from the university’s famous Allen Field House. The business school is oriented, per the owner’s request, so that some rooms have windows that frame the field house. In addition, the section of the building closest to the field house is cantilevered and slanted nine degrees toward it to enhance the views. The project was completed one month early and under budget.

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