GWWO is pleased to announce that Morgan State University Calvin & Tina Tyler Hall has been named AIA Maryland’s 2021 Public Building of the Year and received an Excellence in Design Honor Award.
Public Building of the Year, the organization’s most prestigious award, is chosen by the jury from all built project submissions commissioned by a government or non-profit agency within the State of Maryland. This year’s jury from AIA Georgia praised the building designed in collaboration with Teeple Architects, stating:
“This striking project makes a bold statement about the design aesthetic of university architecture, particularly as sited on an HBCU campus. The goal of the project was to bridge the historic neoclassical style academic quad and the modern campus commons, and that bridge was traversed unapologetically with intention and finesse. The project has an expressive form with sweeping curved walls that reach out to embrace its surroundings, while its limestone cladding links it to history and tradition. The project utilizes its terrain and topography, allowing the natural setting to become an organizational tool. This stately design succeeds in every dimension.”
Founded in 1867, Morgan State University is one of the nation’s premier Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs)—and the largest within the State of Maryland—offering a comprehensive range of undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral programs. In 2016, the campus was designated as a National Treasure by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the second HBCU to be added to the list. Tyler Hall is the latest in a series of transformative construction projects that have totaled over $270 million in campus investment within the past 10 years.
On the former site of the campus library and a highly traversed campus intersection, the building's signature location was specifically chosen to serve as MSU’s outward face and to bridge the gap between the historic and modern precincts of the campus and the nearby residential community. The progressive and captivating design graciously welcome students, visitors, prospective students, and their families while responding to the campus and community context. Programmatically, the design team worked closely with MSU to create a one-stop student services hub by co-locating 17 previously dispersed student services, including admissions and recruitment, bursar, career development, community service, financial aid, records and registration, and administrative components, including human resources, IT, Title II, and sponsored programs, into one building to improve the student experience and collaboration. The adaptable, flexible, technologically rich, and sustainable design will support staff and students well into the future.
In addition to the AIA Maryland honors, Tyler Hall has also been recognized by the Society for College and University Planning (SCUP), Architizer, ASLA Maryland, ENR Mid Atlantic, The Plan, and USGBC Maryland for design excellence. This is also the second year in a row that GWWO’s designs have been named Public Building of the Year. In 2020, the Harriet Tubman Underground Railroad Visitor Center received the award along with an Excellence in Design Merit Award.