Jun 30, 2023 Print This Article

‘Transformational’ Campus Plan outlines Seminary capital projects

New student housing to be centered near campus core, new athletic facilities to be available

Ahead of its 100th anniversary of operations on its Clayton, Mo., campus, Concordia Seminary, St. Louis has introduced a Campus Plan centered on augmenting its iconic campus for the next century of academic and theological leadership. Building for Community: The Campus Plan for Concordia Seminary provides a framework for shaping the Seminary’s physical environment to better serve the needs of students, faculty, staff and, ultimately, the congregations and ministries of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS).

Plan highlights include new student housing, refurbished historic buildings, new athletic facilities and a new welcome center.

“The Campus Plan is aimed at stewarding and enhancing the Seminary’s campus to ensure our spaces serve the needs of our seminarians and scholars now and into the future,” said President Dr. Thomas J. Egger. “This Campus Plan wisely stewards our financial and physical resources, for the sake of our Seminary’s long-term Gospel mission. It embodies our commitment to robust campus community and sets a course for our Seminary’s continued strength and stability for years to come.”

Key goals of the Campus Plan include the following:

  • Preserve and refurbish the historic core of campus and return to using major wings of the Seminary’s beautiful historic buildings.
  • Accentuate the Seminary chapel as the center of the campus community’s life together.
  • Improve housing and athletic facilities — and add a new, large greenspace commons area — to enhance recruitment, enrich the whole-person formational experience of students and foster rich community life.
  • Address existing facility needs and leverage noncore assets in an ongoing effort to create a sustainably funded institution.
  • Create a welcoming gateway to campus to foster greater connections with the surrounding community and the broader church and world.

Phase 1 of the plan will include the construction of three 24-unit apartment buildings and nine townhomes for married students near — just to the west and north — the Chapel of St. Timothy and St. Titus. Additionally, an open-air parking structure will be constructed to the southwest of the chapel.

Phase 2 will include the refurbishment of the historic Craemer, Graebner and Lange halls — wings of the Seminary’s historic campus buildings facing Chapel Plaza — which are currently vacant and unused.

Phase 3 will include the construction of a 75-unit apartment building for single students close to the chapel.

The plans for a new welcome center will be finalized in a future phase. 

As part of the plan, the Seminary has entered into an 80-year agreement with Washington University, a neighboring educational institution, which is exploring the development of a portion of the western side of campus into new auxiliary athletic facilities, such as an indoor basketball court and soccer practice fields, among other possibilities. The Seminary community will have access to these athletic facilities. The existing married student apartments, known as the Woods, and the Pederson Field House — which are currently located on this portion of campus and all of which are nearing the end of their functional lifespan — will be torn down.

The construction of the new married housing units will be completed before the existing units are demolished. At no time during the project will students be displaced.

This historic project will begin upon receipt of all necessary approvals and as funding is in place. The estimated cost for the first three phases is expected to be $45 million. Cost estimates for the future phase will be established when the date draws closer.

Egger said the Campus Plan embraces a “transformational opportunity to improve student services, enhance operations and strengthen our capacity to fulfill our mission in service to the Gospel. … Our stately campus was dedicated in 1926, almost 100 years ago. Our plans look ahead to the next 100!”

Additional information about the Campus Plan, including renderings of the proposed student housing and a downloadable brochure, is available at csl.edu/campus-plan.

About Concordia Seminary

Concordia Seminary, St. Louis provides Gospel-centered graduate-level theological education for pastors, missionaries, deaconesses, scholars and other leaders in the name of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod (LCMS). To learn more, visit csl.edu.