Community Commons

A new heart of campus that attracts students, faculty, and community members with diverse food options, services, and inspired gathering spaces.

132,000 SF


Denver, CO

Moore Ruble Yudell Architects & Planners

2023 American Architecture Award by The Chicago Athenaeum: Museum of Architecture and Design

2023 North American Copper in Architecture Awards

2022 International Architecture Awards Honorable Mention

2022 Metropolis Planet Positive Awards Honorable Mention

2021 Engineering News-Record Best Project Winner for Higher Education

2021 Association of General Contractors ACE Awards, Bronze Award for Best Building Project Over $70M

University of Denver

The Community Commons, designed in association with Moore Ruble Yudell Architects & Planners and built in concert with the Dimond Family Residential Village, is a dynamic Student Commons building that supports the DU Impact 2025 Vision, integrating student life into the heart of campus. Featuring diverse food options, one-stop student services, meeting spaces, and a series of indoor-outdoor spaces including a rooftop event space and green roof with sweeping mountain views, the building is a campus magnet for students and community members.

The building design reinforces the DU Impact goal of strengthening a campus community that “blurs the lines between the campus and city at large” by organizing the building around the concept of “flow”... of people, ideas, and resources. A continuous circulation path tracing the perimeter of a multi-story, light-filled atrium bordered by campus-serving programs and services provides opportunities for students, faculty, and community members to connect. The dining food service approach attracts a broad sampling of the campus community by providing a variety of dining experiences, global-inspired cuisines, and seating environments.

The strong forms of the building relate to DU’s campus palette, while having a unique expression that introduces an informality and expression that draws from the beauty and natural forms of the surrounding region. The building’s siting creates a dialogue with the adjacent Residence Hall’s large green space. Large swaths of exterior glazing project a sense of welcoming and openness while showcasing to the campus community the inner life of the building. The ground plane interconnects indoor and outdoor spaces and supports multiple scales of activity that further encourage gathering and serendipitous interactions.

In collaboration with Moore Ruble Yudell Architects & Planners

[The building] blurs the lines between the campus and city at large' by organizing the building around the concept of 'flow' -- of people, ideas, and resources.

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