Programming outlined approximately 260,000 square feet of new and replacement space within the precinct, including three residence halls, residential and retail dining, and strategic doses of academic space.

Following a 2002 Campus Master Plan decision to demolish and replace three major buildings in the middle of its core campus, Clemson University set out to fundamentally re-imagine the entire Core Campus precinct. The Core Campus Study (completed by VMDO in 2008) was meant to answer the question: How might forward-looking approaches to housing, academic, dining, and student life programs be combined into an intense, innovative, and dynamic mixed-use center for Clemson University?



To resolve this question, VMDO Architects – directing the 700 bed housing initiative – worked in concert with Stevens & Wilkinson Architects and Sasaki Associates to develop a clear and engaging design for the Core Campus precinct. Programming outlined approximately 260,000 square feet of new and replacement space within the precinct, including three residence halls, residential and retail dining, and strategic doses of academic space. The project’s guiding design principle was to create a vibrant cross-section of campus life that captures the physical manifestation of the Clemson experience.

Following a 2002 Campus Master Plan decision to demolish and replace three major buildings in the middle of its core campus, Clemson University set out to fundamentally re-imagine the entire Core Campus precinct. The Core Campus Study (completed by VMDO in 2008) was meant to answer the question: How might forward-looking approaches to housing, academic, dining, and student life programs be combined into an intense, innovative, and dynamic mixed-use center for Clemson University?



To resolve this question, VMDO Architects – directing the 700 bed housing initiative – worked in concert with Stevens & Wilkinson Architects and Sasaki Associates to develop a clear and engaging design for the Core Campus precinct. Programming outlined approximately 260,000 square feet of new and replacement space within the precinct, including three residence halls, residential and retail dining, and strategic doses of academic space. The project’s guiding design principle was to create a vibrant cross-section of campus life that captures the physical manifestation of the Clemson experience.

The design strategy balanced building and landscape through tree-lined parkways, residential courtyards, shady café terraces, and lawn areas. Landscape divides and joins program space, creating a dynamic center for student activity.
The design strategy balanced building and landscape through tree-lined parkways, residential courtyards, shady café terraces, and lawn areas. Landscape divides and joins program space, creating a dynamic center for student activity.

The design strategy balanced building and landscape through tree-lined parkways, residential courtyards, shady café terraces, and lawn areas. Landscape divides and joins program space, creating a dynamic center for student activity. The enhanced residential dining component includes programming for demonstration cooking spaces, sustainable awareness initiatives, scatter-style serveries, grab n' go options, and retail dining options.



VMDO’s housing design consists of 700 beds of suite style housing. One of the three residence halls houses Clemson’s Honors program. The configuration of units and open student spaces is designed to support a variety of living-learning communities that enrich the student experience. Dynamic learning areas – including group meeting rooms, event spaces, distance learning areas, and faculty support spaces – are enriched by pervasive technology and foster collaborative learning and student engagement.

The design strategy balanced building and landscape through tree-lined parkways, residential courtyards, shady café terraces, and lawn areas. Landscape divides and joins program space, creating a dynamic center for student activity. The enhanced residential dining component includes programming for demonstration cooking spaces, sustainable awareness initiatives, scatter-style serveries, grab n' go options, and retail dining options.



VMDO’s housing design consists of 700 beds of suite style housing. One of the three residence halls houses Clemson’s Honors program. The configuration of units and open student spaces is designed to support a variety of living-learning communities that enrich the student experience. Dynamic learning areas – including group meeting rooms, event spaces, distance learning areas, and faculty support spaces – are enriched by pervasive technology and foster collaborative learning and student engagement.

The design strategy balanced building and landscape through tree-lined parkways, residential courtyards, shady café terraces, and lawn areas. Landscape divides and joins program space, creating a dynamic center for student activity.

“The overall plan fits very well with the Campus Master Plan, and has embellished it in way that we could never have otherwise articulated. The program was very challenging, but through innovative problem solving and tireless interaction, the team has taken the complex goals of the University and has fashioned a vision that has taken root.”

– Gerald Vander Mey, ASLA Director of Campus Planning, Clemson University
The design strategy balanced building and landscape through tree-lined parkways, residential courtyards, shady café terraces, and lawn areas. Landscape divides and joins program space, creating a dynamic center for student activity.
The design strategy balanced building and landscape through tree-lined parkways, residential courtyards, shady café terraces, and lawn areas. Landscape divides and joins program space, creating a dynamic center for student activity.
The design strategy balanced building and landscape through tree-lined parkways, residential courtyards, shady café terraces, and lawn areas. Landscape divides and joins program space, creating a dynamic center for student activity.

Client: Clemson University

Location: Clemson, SC

Discipline: Residence and Student Life

Completion: 2016

Size: 260,000 SF