Michigan State University


Mary Mayo Residential Hall Renovation

East Lansing, Michigan

60,000 sf (5,574 m2)

Architecture, Building Systems Consulting, Engineering, Historic Preservation, Interior Architecture, Landscape Architecture, Lighting Design


With its Collegiate Gothic architecture surrounded by stately pines and winding walkways, this 1931 residence hall exemplifies the historic elegance of the original land-grant portion of the Michigan State campus. Time had taken its toll, however. The residence hall needed considerable renovations to maintain the university’s legacy of providing quality housing for its student population. 

The interior renovation included installation of an elevator and other accessibility modifications; new community restrooms; new mechanical, electrical and ventilation systems; fire sprinkling and fire alarm systems; flooring and ceiling replacement; and lighting upgrades. Exterior renovation including roofing, waterproofing, foundation drain work, and barrier-free entry improvements with a heated pavement system. SmithGroupJJR carefully protected historical retaining wall structures, and removed and reinstalled a water feature, thus preserving the building’s original exterior character. It also studied the potential impacts and took special care to ensure protection of the heritage trees in close proximity.

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