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McPherson College celebrated its centennial in 1987, and in looking toward its second century the College developed a new campus plan with the goal of fostering the unification, identity, and safety of the campus. Wichita architect David Haines was hired for the design, and he continued to serve as campus architect until his death in 2001. To achieve unification and improve safety, several streets through campus were closed, and a pedestrian mall was created. As many old buildings were demolished and the campus became modern in appearance, the College wished to maintain the memory of former buildings and their namesakes--significant faculty, presidents, and alumni donors. Structures commemorating previous buildings have therefore been included in the plan. Dedicated in 1989, the Heaston Gazebo was built in part with materials from three historic buildings; plaques honoring four historic buildings are embedded around the Gazebo. Heaston Gazebo has become a popular place for student gatherings, including outdoor chapel services and band concerts. In the spring of 2003, the Harnly Gardens were dedicated on the site of the former Harnly Hall, a science building named after a former president. In this building science professor Willard Hershey created the world's first synthetic diamond.
Our campus plan has achieved its goal of tying the campus together, creating spaces for campus activities, and maintaining our heritage. While we have a modern campus with new buildings, our traditions and heritage have been preserved.
Mines, Cynthia. McPherson College; The First Century. McPherson, KS: McPherson College, 1987.