Heritage Hall Alumni Center

Built in 1903, East Hall was Western Michigan University’s first building and is known as the core of the campus. The deteriorating space was renovated to create the Heritage Hall Alumni Center. Knowing that the building holds memories for alumni, the University is maintaining the historic elements of the building. The new building wings reflect the existing look and feel of East Hall by preserving the original white-columned presence and lighted cupola.

The Alumni Center was designed to:

  • The Alumni Center was completed in Summer 2015.

    Serve as a home for all alumni.
  • Showcase the birthplace of the University.
  • Serve as a touchstone for the WMU experience.
  • Be a community asset.
  • Offer flexible and multipurpose gathering spaces to the community.
  • Illustrate the University's commitment to sustainability.
  • Be a resource center that houses artifacts, pictures and remembrances that are important to the University’s rich history.

Heritage Hall Alumni Center lobby design.

This LEED Platinum project focused on salvaging materials, using locally sourced new materials and incorporating geothermal heating. The team carefully salvaged bricks, radiators, handrails, decorative cornices, fireplaces and other architectural elements that were reused in the new construction. The renovation also included metal restoration, painting, masonry work and a facade facelift.

The center part of the North Hall portico was preserved to become a landscape focal point. Site work on the east side of the building overlooking the city extends the usable space near the portico with a retaining wall and outdoor platform.