Washington Gardner Body and Soul Center

Project Details


Albion College


Albion, Michigan


220,000 total Sq. Ft

About the project/client: 

Washington Gardner Body and Soul Center is an innovative design option for Albion College to cultivate their mission and demonstrate their commitment to engage and collaborate with the City of Albion and surrounding community. Albion College would be uniting education, wellness, and the arts by transforming Washington Gardner High School, into a multi-disciplinary student creative learning hub. Washington Gardner Body and Soul center will be a cornerstone building in the community furthering the College’s downtown presence.

Design Concepts: 

The new performing arts portion of the Body and Soul Center at Albion College will include a 200-seat proscenium theatre, a Black Box theatre, and an adaptation of the existing Auditorium for use as a Recital Hall. Additional featured support spaces will be: 

  • Scene shop 
  • Green room 
  • Theatre control rooms
  • Costume shop 
  • Lobby and reception spaces 
  • Concession area 
  • Rehearsal spaces 
  • Music classrooms 


The primary design intent focuses on fostering student engagement, wellness, and a sense of belonging resulting in attraction and retention, opportunity for innovation, and providing safe and inclusive environments.   

  • Sustainability through environmental responsibility – embrace existing landmark for preservation of past while establishing a responsible sustainable future. 
  • Community connections through local and global partnerships – extend opportunities for engaging learners within and beyond the college.
  • Hubs of interdisciplinary excellence through flexible spaces – amplify collaboration between diverse student body, faculty, and department. 
  • Welcoming, equitable, and accessible space through making activities and events visible, inclusive, and collaborative. Create safe and inclusive experiences where all individuals feel like they genuinely belong, are valued, empowered, and ultimately matter.