Council of Independent Colleges Historic Campus Architecture Project


Rose Window Plaza/Centennial Lane

Click on image titles for larger views.
Institution Name: Friends University
Original/Historic Place Name: Circle Drive
Location on Campus: 2100 W. University St.
Date(s) of Construction:
1996original construction Wilson Darnell Mann Architects Friends University Landscape Committee
Designer: Wilson Darnell Mann Architects (Wichita, KS); Friends University Landscape Committee
Type of Place: Landscape site
Style: (Glossary)
Significance: architecture, culture, history, landscape
Narrative: see below
References: see below
1996-present (2006)outdoor space (circle drive to provide access to Davis Administration Building and angled parking originally; now provides a gathering space for campus community events throughout the year, and attractive, welcoming entrance to campus)

For many years Circle Drive provided access to the historic Davis Administration Building. The Class of 1922 provided funding for the construction of stone gates at the eastern edge of the street, creating the main entrance to campus and the Davis building. In 1996 Friends University undertook a landscaping project to enhance the area around the Davis building and to create a more welcoming entrance to the campus. The architectural firm of Wilson Darnell & Mann developed plans for the creation of Rose Window Plaza. (The design firm envisioned sun streaming through the stained-glass rose window in Alumni Auditorium on the west side of the building and this image falling on the east side of the building if there were no walls.) The design plans were further enhanced by the University's Landscape Committee. The street leading to the plaza was removed and replaced with wide sidewalks, a lawn, flower beds (including 230 red rose bushes), trees, shrubs, seating areas and period lighting. This area was named Centennial Lane during the University's centennial celebration in 1998-1999. The combined area has won several national and regional design awards.

The Rose Window Plaza and Centennial Lane have become a gathering place for the campus community and hosts a variety of student and alumni events throughout the year. Together they provide an excellent example of the ability to modernize an area and its usage but retain an historical and traditional style befitting the period in which the Davis Administration Building was built. The area's beauty and park-like features contribute to the well being of students, faculty, staff, and people from the surrounding neighborhood.


Focus (Spring 1996 and Winter 1996). Friends University, Wichita, KS.


Contact us / About Site / About CIC
© 2006
Council of Independent Colleges
Washington, DC
All rights reserved
Last update: November 2006