Washington University in St. Louis
Millstone Plaza & Ackert Walkway at Washington University
St. Louis, MO
The improvements to Millstone Plaza, located in the heart of Washington University’s historic Danforth Campus, were completed in 2018 as part of University’s renovations to Bryan Hall. This space, flanked by the campus’ heavily used Olin Library to the south, is not only a major converging point for East-West and North-South university traffic, but also sits along the GRG Centennial Greenway and acts a hub for trail users as they cross over the 4-lane Forest Park Parkway.
The improvements transformed this gateway into an open, accessible, and functional space which provides users the opportunity to stop and experience the beauty of the campus. The grand staircase in the center of the plaza incorporates a built-in bike trough for easily transporting bicycles up and down the stairs. A new ADA compliant switchback ramp affords cyclists and pedestrians of all abilities to comfortably navigate through the space and experience the plaza’s diverse plant palette consisting of native trees, shrubs, and perennials.
The often congested, non-ADA compliant existing Forest Park Parkway Bridge connecting Millstone Plaza north to residential neighborhoods south has been transformed to offer separated bicycle and pedestrian travel lanes with both accessible ramp and stair options.