Beimdiek Recreation Center Renovation and Expansion Missouri Southern State University

Joplin, Mo.
Construction Cost: $14 million
Area / Square Feet: 126,400
Occupancy Date: October 2009

The renovated and expanded Billingsly Student Center at Missouri Southern now serves multiple masters. It is the new home of the Beimdiek Recreation Center, the Willcoxon Health Center, the campus bookstore, textbook rental services, Lion’s Den Food Service and student life offices.

Among the university’s charges was to keep Billingsly’s defined and dominant entrance, integrate a new student recreation facility fully into the existing student center, achieve a unified new facility that is seamlessly integrated into the campus’ homogeneous architectural palette, create internal visual excitement for all users and visitors, and accentuate exterior views towards the adjacent river valley.

The exterior design aesthetic improves on the existing facade and respects the existing building context, providing large open views out of the building, while adding to the punched openings prevalent on campus. The result is a building that is a beacon for campus life, engaging students to actively use the facility. Inside, a primary objective was the development of a main street causeway that promotes a social environment through interior openness and views of activity areas, and allows students to “shop the activities” within. Campus colors are utilized throughout the building.