Skip to main content
Start of main content

Oakland University – Varner Hall Renovation and Addition

Helping better equip the University to create an environment where students of the arts can thrive

  • $32M

    Construction Value

  • 98K

    Square Feet

  • Rochester Hills, Michigan

    Rochester Hills, Michigan

Maximizing functionality on a limited budget

Recognizing the need to update Varner Hall with modern infrastructure and spaces better equipped for today’s music, theater and dance students, Oakland University (OU) selected Stantec to lead its design of a major renovation and addition.

Our team worked in tandem with OU to achieve a goal of improving student and public experience while replacing critical infrastructure at Varner, which was built in 1970 and is home to the University’s School of Music, Theater and Dance. Our team of planners, engineers and designers developed creative design interventions, making a significant impact to the functionality and public-facing spaces in an existing facility with a limited budget. This includes adding new lobbies to help clarify building circulation, address accessibility issues while also creating a new front door to the building. Major elements of the master plan included the Stantec-led investigation into the HVAC and other building systems. We soon developed options for the University to replace and update these systems within the existing building.

The impact these improvements will have on the school’s students and faculty, as well as those attending performances, will be realized in every area of the building, especially as it relates to air handling, lighting, and improved spaces.

At a Glance

Meet Our Team

Patrick Calhoun, Principal, Business Center Operations Leader, Senior Planner

In educational building design, you like hearing how your design positively impacts students. When you extrapolate out to future generations, that experience is both joyful and humbling.
Patrick Calhoun Principal, Business Center Operations Leader, Senior Planner Read More

Michael Decoster, Principal

I play an integral role in developing business and leading projects for a variety of business sectors in the Detroit market.

Beth Doane, Senior Associate, Architecture

I’m excited about the future of senior care. The pandemic has shed light on essential improvements to better protect older family members.

Adam O'Brien, Principal

As architects, we’re responsible for making the world better—the greatest reward is knowing your work directly benefits your neighbors.

Patrick Calhoun

Principal, Business Center Operations Leader, Senior Planner

Michael Decoster


Beth Doane

Senior Associate, Architecture

Adam O'Brien


We’re better together

  • Become a client

    Partner with us today to change how tomorrow looks. You’re exactly what’s needed to help us make it happen in your community.

  • Design your career

    Work with passionate people who are experts in their field. Our teams love what they do and are driven by how their work makes an impact on the communities they serve.

End of main content
To top