University of Wisconsin's Alumni Park Honors Former Students Accomplishments
Alumni Park at the University of Wisconsin-Madison is a campus space of unique intent and transformative impact that realized a century-long vision for the school, creating a signature destination commemorating 170 years of alumni accomplishments.
Integrated Planning Process
The seven-year planning and design process played a pivotal role in realizing the university's longstanding vision for the East Campus Gateway. While the Wisconsin Alumni Foundation served as primary client and funder, the park's design and construction needed to be fully integrated with improvements to the adjacent Memorial Union, Terrace, and shoreline. The resulting process successfully connected all these high-profile efforts in an innovative and impactful way.
To facilitate close coordination between these concurrent projects, the interdisciplinary team of landscape architects, architects, engineers, artists, and exhibit designers adopted a shared building information modeling program at the outset. This comprehensive 3D model provided a seamless transition to construction documentation, along with invaluable VR review sessions that immersed decisionmakers and funders in the overall design.
Monthly stakeholder meetings generated input from alumni groups, student organizations, faculty, the city of Madison, the Historic Society, campus planning/facilities staff, and state agency representatives. Storytelling development was led by a content-and-design committee, incorporating alumni, city, state, and campus representatives who helped identify and craft compelling narratives of alumni achievements and contributions.
The degree to which the park's alumni-driven process and physical design embody UW's overarching educational mission of benefit and service to society is a hallmark of the project - a living legacy that will inform future phases of story and exhibit development.