University of Minnesota

University of Minnesota

Minneapolis, MN


Weisman Art Museum Announces Plaza Design Competition Winner

By Design at Minnesota
Nov 7, '11 9:11 PM EST

Last week, the team led by School of Architecture Adjunct Professors Jennifer Yoos and Vincent James of VJAA, working with architecture Associate Professor Marc Swackhamer of HouMinn Practice and others, was announced the winner of the Weisman Art Museum's Plaza Design Competition.

A thoroughfare for bikers and pedestrians, the competition, conducted by the Target Studio for Creative Collaboration, focused on the bridge plaza at the east end of the Washington Avenue Bridge - noted for its magnificent views of the Mississippi River and access to the University of Minnesota's west bank campus.

"I think what was unique about our scheme was its sensitivity to the existing site and surrounding buildings," said Swackhamer. "We endeavored to have a profound impact on this extremely visible part of the campus through an economic, yet elegant, set of architectural and landscape moves. For Blair Satterfield and me (HouMinn Practice), it was a thrill to work with the extremely talented team of designers at VJAA, and with the thoughtful, sublime artist Diane Willow. We're excited to be a part of this project moving forward."

The next phase of the project will be to hold meetings with the winning team, and the campus community, in the Target Studio to refine the design and implement the plan.

"The design competition challenged the four competing teams to create ideas that will transform the plaza into a more artful and meaningful experience for its users," said Target Studio director Craig Amundsen. "The new plaza should be representative of our times, yet able to evolve."

For more information, visit the Weisman Art Museum website here