Since its opening in 1995, Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park has evolved
into a major cultural attraction focusing on horticulture, sculpture, the environment
and the arts. The original vision has turned into a top cultural destination in the United
States, known internationally for the quality of the art and gardens. Our growth in visitors has been nothing short of phenomenal. Matching that has been the growth of our art collection, our dedicated garden spaces and our educational offerings. Because of this success, major expansion in several key areas is needed. A $115 million capital campaign titled Welcoming the World: Honoring a Legacy of Love has begun.
New York firm Tod Williams Billie Tsien Architects | Partners has been selected to re-envision and expand the facilities. Well-known for their masterful design of the iconic Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia and, most recently, chosen to design the Barack Obama Presidential Center in Chicago, Williams and Tsien see architecture as “an act of profound optimism.” They have discovered a similar spirit in Meijer Garden’s unique marriage of beautiful art and inspiring green spaces.
“We are deeply honored to be have been selected by Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park for this special project,” said Tod Williams. “From our very first visit, we were struck by the incredible quality of the sculpture collection and its sensitive installation throughout the grounds, as well as by their magnificent Japanese Garden. We saw that the place and the people here are unique.”Guided by Tod and Billie, the design team will ensure that the new Meijer Gardens campus is an expression of the mission of Meijer Gardens in both form and function. Local partners Progressive AE and Owen-Ames-Kimball Co. will be heavily involved with the design and construction process.
Tod Williams and Billie Tsien have been working together since 1977 and founded their architectural practice in 1986. Located in New York, their studio focuses on work for institutions including schools, museums, not-for-profit organizations, and people who value issues of aspiration and meaning, timelessness and beauty. Their buildings are carefully made from the inside out to be functional in ways that speak to both efficiency and the spirit. A sense of rootedness, light, texture, detail, and most of all, experience, are at the heart of what they design. Over the past three decades they have received more than two dozen awards from the American Institute of Architects, as well as numerous national and international citations. Outside the studio, Tod and Billie are devoted participants in the cultural community and have long-standing associations with many arts organizations. They maintain active academic careers and lecture worldwide. As both educators and practitioners, they are deeply committed to making a better world through architecture.