Aquinas College

New Main Entrance

Grand Rapids, Michigan

Client Challenge

It was planned that the main entrance of the College, located on the primarily residential Robinson Road, needed to be moved to Fulton Street, which the primary thoroughfare through downtown Grand Rapids. The Aquinas team desired to have a comprehensive design solution for this entry which includes entry gate components, signage, lighting, sidewalks, landscape and other coordination items to create a truly remarkable entry experience focused on a statue of St. Thomas Aquinas. The goal of the project was the build the brand of the College in the broader community in order to aid in the recruitment of new students, faculty, and staff.

TowerPinkster Solution

Flanking the entrance at Fulton Street, the TowerPinkster team designed a new gateway entry to the campus composed of curved brick walls, stone and wrought iron. Previously, there was limited signage to demark the campus to the community. By enhancing the boundary of campus, the College brand was heightened while helping with wayfinding for visitors. Our team worked with a Sculptor, Jay Hall Carpenter, to design the bronze statue of St. Thomas Aquinas and locate it in the island at the new entry on Fulton Street. The statue of St. Thomas Aquinas is the focal point of the Fulton Street Entrance and is a reference point on campus while projecting the unique Dominican values of the College to the community. Site design included adding trees and landscaping to the entrance, creating an overall grand entrance to the College.

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