Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


Gray Campus Center

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Institution Name: Reed College
Original/Historic Place Name: Commons, Student Union, Community Center Building
Location on Campus:
Date(s) of Construction:
1965original construction Harry Weese & Associates
Designer: Harry Weese & Associates
Type of Place: Individual building
Style: Modern/post-WWII (Glossary)
Significance: architecture, education
Narrative: see below
References: see below
Foundation: concrete
Walls: wood, glass
Roof: wood decking
ca. 1965-present (2006)student union (commons area for student functions and performances, recently office and meeting space)
ca. 1965-present (2006)dining hall

The Commons Building built in 1965 was a significant departure from the Brick Collegiate Gothic style of the campus's original buildings. It was designed in a contemporary architectural style and the building tried to accommodate several functions, a design that over the years proved unsuccessful. The building and adjacent structures were recently remodeled and a new façade added to transform the structure into a Modern Academic Gothic style in keeping with the original campus architecture. It incorporates the original eating hall that became the student union in 1965 and continues to serve that function with an attached café.


Ritz, Richard E. A History of the Reed College Campus and Its Buildings. Portland, OR: Trustees of the Reed Institute, 1990.


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Last update: November 2006