School of Architecture College of Design

Architecture Tours

Friday, October 25 and Saturday, October 26, 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Friday tours:

All Friday tours depart Ralph Rapson Hall, 89 Church Street SE, Minneapolis

Great River Energy Headquarters ★

Approved for 1.75 AIA LU/HSW

Great River Energy Headquarters was completed in 2008 by Perkins+Will. Named to the AIA Cote Top Ten list, the LEED Platinum project has many unique sustainable design solutions. Meet at Rapson Hall at 1:00 PM to board bus to Maple Grove for a tour led by designers from Perkins+Will Minneapolis.


Lakewood Cemetery Garden Mausoleum / Lakewood Memorial Chapel ★

Approved for 1.75 AIA LU/HSW

Lakewood Cemetery Garden Mausoleum was recently completed by HGA Architects Joan Soranno and alumnus John Cook. Winner of 22 national and international awards, this project has been praised for its extraordinary light and material qualities creating profoundly contemplative spaces. The chapel building is listed in the National Register for Historic Places, noted for its mosaic interior and structurally innovative dome. Meet at Rapson Hall at 1:00 PM to board transportation to the Lakewood Cemetery, where a tour of the mausoleum, landscape, and memorial chapel will be led by designers from HGA Architects and Engineers.


UMN Physics and Nanotechnology Building / Northrop Auditorium Revitalization ▲


2.5 AIA LU/HSW Pending Approval

Physics and Nanotechnology is a new 144,000 SF laboratory building located just east of the School of Architecture on the Minneapolis Campus.  Architectural Alliance and Portland-based ZGF Architects collaborated on the design.  The building supports the symbiotic connection of Physics and Nanotechnology by providing laboratories with highly technical environmental controls as well as an H-5 ISO 5 and 6 Clean Room.  Following the Northrop tour, attendees will walk to the Physics and Nanotechnology construction site. The tour will be led by Architectural Alliance.  Focus of the tour will be the changing landscape of the campus, the collaboration and research spaces within the building, and the sustainable and energy efficiency strategies employed in this high hazard and stringent lab environment with significant environmental impacts. 


From the Physics building, attendees will walk to the Northrop Auditorium, which is undergoing a major structural and programmatic renovation. The design by HGA Architects and Engineers will transform this landmark building into a modern hub of campus creative activity. Tour will be led by the design team from HGA.

Tour participants will meet in the lobby of Rapson Hall at 2:45 PM and be escorted to the Physics building by a tour assistant. The tour will begin there at 3 PM and transition to the Northrop at 4:15.


UMN Science Teaching and Student Services Building / Weisman Art Museum Expansion ★

Approved for 2.5 AIA LU

Science Teaching and Student Services (STSS) building was designed by alumnus Bill Pedersen of KPF as a signature building at the gateway to the U. Innovative science teaching methods informed this unique program. Meet at 1:00 PM where a tour will be led by Bill Pedersen and the design team from KPF and the executive architect from HGA Architects and Engineers. Frank Gehry designed his first art museum for the University of Minnesota in 1989. The Weisman Art Museum exemplified early Gehry design production, the recently completed expansion used cutting-edge digital design and fabrication. After the STSS tour, attendees will visit the recent addition to the Weisman Art Museum led by the HGA executive architect team.


Guthrie Theater / Izzy’s Ice Cream Factory ★


Approved for 1.5 AIA LU

The new Guthrie Theater, completed in 2006, is located in the Historic Mills District on the banks of the Mississippi River. Designed by Jean Nouvel with Architectural Alliance as Architect of Record, the 250,000 SF Guthrie Theater houses three theaters, production and rehearsal support spaces, educational classrooms, and a restaurant.  The 1,100-seat thrust theater is a reinterpretation of the Guthrie’s original signature space designed by Ralph Rapson.  A new 700-seat proscenium theater accommodated an expanded program of modern plays and a black-box theater with 250 seats provides an experimental venue for both Guthrie and community performances.  The design of the theater was influenced by the size, scale, and massing of the historic mill district and offers dramatic views of St. Anthony Falls, Stone Arch Bridge, and Mills Ruins Park.  


The tour, led by Architectural Alliance, will include visits to the 3 theaters and a tour of a variety of backstage spaces including actor facilities, rehearsal rooms, scene shop, and costume shop facilities.  Tour participants will also have the opportunity to tour a variety of public spaces, including the endless bridge, a lobby that cantilevers 175 feet over the Mississippi River valley.  If arriving on your own, please plan to meet the group outside the front entrance by 1:30 PM.

Following the Guthrie tour, attendees will talk to the recently completed Izzy's Ice Cream building. This project includes both ice cream production and a cafe on a highly visible site next to the Guthrie and Gold Medal Park. The tour will be led by designers from Salmela Architects and building owner Jeff Sommers.

NOTE TOUR CANCELLATION: Walker Library / Museum of Russian Art

Saturday tours:

All Saturday tours depart from the Depot Renaissance Minneapolis Hotel, 225 3rd Ave South, Minneapolis


Buses will line up at the turn around inside the parking lot in the middle of the complex and our tour team will be positioned out on the sidewalk to help direct you to the correct bus.


Mill City Museum / MSR Offices ★

Approved for 2 AIA LU

The Mill City Museum, a 2005 AIA Honor Award winner, was designed by architects Meyer Scherer & Rockcastle (MS&R). Built in the ruins of what had been the largest flour mill in the world, the museum and MS&R office insert contemporary programs into a historic building. Meet at the outside of the front entrance to the Mill City Museum on 2nd Street. Park across the street in the municipal ramp (parking will be provided per your registration). Tours of the interior and exterior of the mill building will be led by design architects from MS&R.


Philip Johnson’s Davis House / George Johnson I House★

Approved for 1.5 AIA LU


Visit the stunning house designed by Philip Johnson in 1952 for MIA curator Richard S. Davis and his wife on Lake Minnetonka and the George Johnson I House in Orono. This tour will be led by DOCOMOMO modern preservation representatives.

DOCOMOMO US MN (a MN Chapter of the International/ National Modern Preservation Organizaton DOCOMOMO), who will be docenting and organizing the tour at the Phillip Johnson Davis House, have generously helped us to offer a substitute -  a significant John Howe House, on Lake Minnetonka, and will also help to docent that house


NOTE: The Streeter House, which was originally packaged with the Davis House, has been cancelled due to policies about touring in residential neighborhoods in the City of Deephaven. The George Johnson I House has been subsstituted.


Target Plaza Commons / Interchange ▲

Approved for 2.5 AIA LU/HSW


Target commissioned Julie Snow Architects to design a new recreational space in two existing, low-rise buildings next to their downtown headquarters. The project, completed in 2012, retains the raw character of the old buildings while creating a welcoming and contemporary social space. Meet at The Depot, 225 South 3rd Ave, Minneapolis, at 1:00 PM where attendees will take a tour bus to Target Plaza Commons. The tour will be led by the design team from Julie Snow Architects.

The Interchange project is a new transportation hub adjacent to the Target Field baseball stadium. Designed by alumnus Peter Cavaluzzi from EEK, this project uses many cutting-edge sustainable infrastructure strategies. After the Target Plaza tour, the group will bus to the Interchange project where design architects from EEK will lead the tour of the Interchange construction site. Attendees will be provided hard hats, gloves, vests, and glasses. Attendees are required to wear sturdy, closed toed shoes and pants, and will be asked to sign a waiver on the day of the tour.

NOTE TOUR CANCELLATION: American Swedish Institute Nelson Cultural Center and Historic Turnblad Mansion



About the Tours
Tours are offered on both Friday and Saturday from 1:00 to 4:00 PM. Please note that each day's tours run concurrently, so you may attend a maximum of one tour per day. Tours are first-come availability and may fill quickly. Tours are subject to change or cancellation. If you plan to attend the Gopher pre-game party and/or the football game, timing conflicts will prevent you from taking a Saturday tour.

Continuing Education Credit

3 AIA Learning Units will be credited per tour as noted. Credits are HSW or SD as indicated, pending approval.

ADA Accessibility & Construction Sites

Tours noted with a ★ symbol are ADA accessible. Tours noted with a ▲ symbol are site under construction. For these locations, attendees will be provided hard hats, gloves, vests, and glasses. Attendees are required to wear sturdy, closed toed shoes and pants, and will be asked to sign a waiver on the day of the tour.


School of Architecture
145 Rapson Hall
89 Church Street
Minneapolis, MN 55455

Fax: 612-624-5743


Contact Information

Undergraduate Student Services
12 McNeal Hall, 1985 Buford Ave., St. Paul, MN 55108
107 Rapson Hall, 89 Church Street SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455
P: 612-624-1717 | E:

General Information
P: 612-626-9068 | E:

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