UNIVERSITY OF VIRGINIA                                                                                                          GROUNDS PLAN                                                                                                          OFFICE OF THE ARCHITECT

Notable Project Timeline
This timeline highlights building and landscape projects, as well as related publications, that exemplify one or more of the principles of the Grounds Plan. Items are organized by their actual or estimated completion date.


The Dell           
This project represents a creative response to the challenge of stormwa­ter management, provid­ing environmental and aesthetic improvements while meeting the regula­tory needs of the John Paul Jones Arena.







Observatory Hill Dining Hall
The grass elipse created to the south of the dining hall provides much need flat open space to the Alderman Road Residence Hall and offers an out of doors compliment to the community gathering spaces found inside the building.



Historic Preservation FrameWork Plan This plan evaluated over 140 build­ings and landscapes, setting the framework for the continued preservation and study of the University’s post-Jefferson built history.


Cocke Hall
Renovation of this 1898 Stanford White structure.






Fayerweather Hall
Renovation config­ured this 1893building for use by Art History, demonstrating the importance of adaptable construction for this historic gymnasium.


Wilsdorf Hall
Containing nanotechnol­ogy research facilities, this structure was constructed on top of a parking lot in close proximity to related research buildings while improving connectivity in the precinct.


gSustainability Assessment
Devel­oped over a year-long process, details the breadth and depth of activities at UVa. and represents the first documented account of the University’s sustainability initiatives.


Ruffin Hall
Constructed for the Studio Arts program, this structure ex­tends north out from the Fiske Kimball Fine Arts Library and sets out a built edge to frame a landscaped central space as planned in the Arts Grounds Master Plan


iClaude Moore Nursing Education Building
Located on 15th Street across the street from School of Nursing School in McLeod Hall and the upcoming Medical Eduacation Building, this structure extends the medical education complex onto previously underutilized land in close proximity to the Hospital and Academical Village.

jClaude Moore Medical Education Building
Targeting LEED Silver Certification and built adjacent to School of Medicine facilities in MR-5 and the Carter Harrison Research Building.


SouthLawn Project
Constructs 114,000 GSF of space for the College of Arts and Sciences to house the History, Religious Studies and Politics depart­ments. The initial planning and design of the South Lawn featured significant and successful coordination with neighbors and the City of Charlottesville. This project was also the first at UVa. to pursue LEED certification.







Emily Couric Clinical Cancer Center
Formerly the site of a parking garage.


2011 and beyond

Rugby Administrative Building
Originally built as Faculty Apartments, restoration of this currently vacant building will provide space for administrative offices while preserving University history and conserving the embodied energy of building materials.


NewCabell Hall
Containing nanotechnol­ogy research facilities, this structure was con­structed on top of a parking lot in close prox­imity to related research buildings

oLee Street
Signif­icant improvements to Lee Street and the entrance to the Main Hospital are designed to better direct patients and visitors as well as form a more cohesive connection between health system facilities.




South Lawn                       New development, community integration, preservation

The South Lawn project is the brainchild of former Arts & Sciences Dean Mel Leffler. Originally termed the “Digi­tal Academical Village,” the project creates a presence for the College of Arts and Sciences on the south side of Jefferson Park Avenue (JPA), and accommodates future growth in College programs. The siting of the project on the south side of the thoroughfare offered superior opportunities for expansion in the interest of a multi-dis­ciplinary future for the South Grounds.

The initial goal for the design--to connect the precinct visually, physically and metaphorically with Central Grounds through ordered, articulated space--was de­rived from the Lawn and the axial relationship to the Ro­tunda. Bringing students and faculty together for open dialogue and an active connection outside the academ­ic classroom was also desired, and the plan for South Lawn prioritized outdoor activity space and circulation. A strong desire to “knit” the University community back together drove the final axial arrangement of buildings and green space in an effort to unify the Arts & Science buildings to the Health System. The incorporation of LEED standards into the site planning and design of the project added to its overall success and influence.

Interaction between the various communities involved in the project was imperative as plans for the South Lawn developed. Planning workshops were held within the University’s internal community, involving key players and departments such as Health Sciences, the Arts and Sciences, in addition to others. The products of these meetings were invaluable to the overall South Lawn de­sign process and to the greater master planning vision. Public meetings were also held to engage members of the greater Charlottesville community, specifically those individuals living in close proximity to the project and others who had specific concerns related to the develop­ment of the South Lawn. In this way, the South Lawn be­came a multi-faceted project involving different types of communities interconnected by the future develop­ment proposed for the site.

The design development stage of the project was a long and involved process throughout which the University dealt with a number of concerns from city residents and neighborhoods surrounding the site and the University. Each challenge was approached with the intent to com­promise and provide an improved project benefiting the overall community. One example of this was the solution offered to community residents opposed to the scale of the proposed development. Residents along Oakhurst Circle felt the initial plans were out of scale with the sur­rounding community, and revisions were made, resulting in more appropriate placement of structures and inte­gration into the natural topography of the site to respect the residential feel of the area.

Another issue brought to the table by the Charlottesville and University communities was the loss of surface park­ing from the existing parking lot on the site. When the below-grade parking garage became too expensive to remain in the proposed plans, residents were concerned their access to cultural events would not be ensured. The University offered a solution in the form of accessible parking on the north side of JPA and the addition of surface parking lots on Brandon Avenue. This area had been identified in the Parking Management Plan as a prime location for redevelopment; thus surface parking would maintain that development potential while aid­ing the parking problem for the South Lawn project site. However, as most projects go, one solution often creates other problems. Residents along Valley Road opposed the Brandon Avenue parking lots, feeling they would negatively affect the character of the neighborhood and encourage commuter traffic. After gaining commu­nity input, the University decided the best compromise would be to pay the cost of converting Valley Road into a cul-de-sac on the north side, eliminating the opportu­nity for non-neighborhood traffic to move through the neighborhood.

Uncovered Archaeology from the Freed-Person's Homesite

Finally, the South Lawn addition raised a number of questions as to how the University would address cul­tural resources, pertinent to the history of the institution, in the face of future development. Because the South Lawn project resides in an area once known as “Cana­da”--the former location of an early African-American community--tension between the plans for development and the importance of acknowledging community his­tory needed to be addressed. The decision to retain the historic Kitty Foster homestead and adjacent African-American burial ground to create an interpretive public park in commemoration was viewed as a positive step. The move unified the vision of the South Lawn project to the overarching history of the University itself, creating cultural ties that are essential in a project of this scale and scope.

Public Park and detail of Shadow Catcher at the Kitty Foster Homestead

The South Lawn project is an exemplary model for the successful integration of communities past, present and future. While incorporating innovative design solutions that push the University toward ever more sustainable goals, the project also exhibits the challenges and re­wards involved in the merging of communities toward one vision. By taking the time to understand individual concerns and provide case-sensitive answers, the Uni­versity was able to address issues effectively through communication and compromise. The South Lawn exem­plifies the benefit cross-community and cross-cultural en­gagement has on a project and its future success.