Archives

  1. Minnesota Children’s Museum

    A reorganized interior improves entry sequencing, ticketing, and circulation by moving the main entry from street level to skyway level where 80% of visitors arrive from a parking structure. A new central stair and elevator provide visually clear access to exhibit galleries from the main lobby. New colorful portals offer clear wayfinding to exhibit galleries, which provide neutral and flexible shell space for changing exhibits. The redesigned interior and exterior simplify the visual complexity of the original architecture to provide an orderly backdrop to the energetic chaos created by hundreds of kids engaging with highly interactive exhibits. Annual attendance at the museum has increased by 28% since reopening.

  2. Madison Municipal Building

    Constructed in 1929 and listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the Madison Municipal Building originally functioned as a United States Postal Service facility and federal courthouse. The multi-phased renovation and reorganization uncovers and preserves the building’s historic character, while adapting it to serve 21st-century government functions. The project brings together various local government agencies, previously scattered across two buildings, to improve customer service and inter-agency communication. Certified LEED-NC v. 3 Platinum, the building transformation supports the health and well-being of staff, visitors, and the entire community.

  3. Aeon the Rose Housing

    This new housing complex includes 47 affordable and 43 market rate apartments, underground parking, and various indoor and outdoor community spaces. Using the Living Building Challenge (LBC) as a framework in the process, the designers placed equal emphasis on providing equity and beauty, meeting SB2030 goals for reducing energy 70% below baseline, reducing water use by 50%, and not significantly increasing construction costs over a conventional building. The design incorporates many small measures that add up to significant gains in each of these areas.

  4. Aeon the Louis Housing

    This project involved transforming a brownfield, industrial site in the Prospect Park neighborhood near the Minneapolis/Saint Paul border along the light rail transit Metro Green Line into 63 affordable apartments and 7 market-rate apartments. The site is part of a larger stormwater management district developed through the Prospect North Partnership. Our site was designed to provide stormwater collection and infiltration for a several block area. The district is also an urban village experience with pedestrian-oriented design and high-density livability. Amenities include a community space, conference room, secure courtyard with a play area, bicycle storage for every apartment, and a fitness center. The project received Metropolitan Council TOD funding and MHFA LIHTC funding by complying with Enterprise Green Communities standards.

  5. Carleton College Weitz Center for Creativity

    The Weitz Center serves as a working laboratory for creativity—not only in the arts, but across the entire curriculum. It positions the college as a national leader in arts programs by creating an environment that fosters creativity, critical thinking, collaborative working skills, and cross-cultural exploration. An adaptive reuse and expansion of a former middle school complex, the center houses the departments of studio arts, dance and theater, and cinema and media studies. It incorporates classrooms, studios, a teaching museum, performance spaces, and state-of-the-art collaborative spaces.

     

     

     

  6. Fortune 100 Company Facilities ESG Metrics & Recommendations

    MSR Design helped a Fortune 100 company achieve its next phase of corporate sustainability and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) goals. We analyzed and documented the embodied carbon content in the corporation’s typical facility designs and used the results of this assessment to develop a prioritized set of recommendations for improving their buildings’ structures, envelopes, and sites, tailored to their specific climates and locations. MSR Design also reviewed the composition and estimated the embodied carbon of currently specified interior assemblies and finishes. We reviewed transparency documentation and other manufacturer data and used our expertise in sustainable materials to identify harmful materials that should be replaced to create healthier environments for employees and visitors.

    Collaborating with the organization’s internal team, we developed category-specific recommendations and created a concept for a net zero carbon facility. These results will serve as a guide for the company as it advances its vision to cocreate an equitable and regenerative future together with partners and communities.

  7. Louisville Free Public Library Southwest Regional Library

    The construction employs a standardized structural steel frame, similar to those used in big box retail stores. The library design focuses on creatively using common materials. Standardized components—including modular masonry, window systems, and raised flooring—form a low maintenance, highly flexible public place. Through scale and a glowing beacon bay, the building establishes a presence in a fragmented environment of scattered building types along a highway. The open, transparent interior offers inviting spaces for different generations of people to experience and clear site lines for service efficiency and enhanced interactions between library staff and customers.

    MSR Design collaborated with architect JRA Architects and landscape architect MKSK on the project.

  8. Meridian Library District Orchard Park Branch

    This new community library is designed to create connections in the community with a focus on removing barriers to access and expanding all-inclusive services and programs. In response to a public input process and focus group sessions with parents and local educators, the design team developed a design that supports the needs of neurodivergent community members, going beyond merely providing a dedicated sensory space to creating a holistic library experience approach focused on sound, durability, lighting, extension of tactile surfaces, and ease of building use. The library serves as a family-oriented gathering and learning center designed to inspire creativity and a sense of purpose.

  9. Eastman Nature Center

    The design integrates site, building, and exhibits in order to create a holistic visitor experience in the forest. A long southern facing glass facade brings in light, provides passive solar energy, and extends the exterior paths through the building from the understory on one end to the tree canopy on the other. An active solar array and a geothermal-based heating and cooling system provide much of the building’s energy needs. Operable windows provide ventilation and draw in the sounds and smells of the forest. Roof water feeds a pond to attract birds and animals for human observation.

  10. Hennepin County Library–Maple Grove

    The seamless design fully integrates the library and park, while a lake provides renewable, hydrothermal energy for the building. The design integrates outdoor views and spaces (such as a reading porch) to create a strong inside-outside relationship and extend the experience beyond the library walls—connecting residents to information, the outdoors, and the larger community. The building was designed in accordance with the B3 State of Minnesota Sustainable Building Guidelines.