American Indian Hall
Morrison-Maierle worked with ThinkOne, a local Bozeman architect, to perform the structural design and site civil design for this unique building located on the Malone Centennial Mall at MSU.
This $20M, 31,000 sq. ft. building was funded through donor gifts. It is the first in Montana to obtain LEED Platinum v4 status (video below), earning all three points in the structural materials category plus one additional point for exemplary structural performance.
The building system is a combination of wood and steel, and there were several unique architectural features including a curved monumental staircase, curved canopies, a drum room, and a 140 ft. awning in the shape of a feather.
The project received all three LEED points for stormwater management due to its unique drainage concept using several “rain garden” type retention areas, dry wells, and underground systems. Site landscaping, including the retention areas, incorporates native species commonly used by the tribes as explained on permanent signboards around the building.
The building sits between four groves of large, mature trees. The design team managed to save most, but that presented a challenge from a grading standpoint. The trees that were removed were re‑purposed in and around the building for columns, indoor furniture, outdoor benches, and artwork.
Because of the unique design, the site civil design required a thoughtful approach. The building contains numerous curved sidewalks, a circular building, ramps, elaborate concrete joint patterns, and other features not normally encountered on a typical site.