A student union is the centerpiece of a collegiate campus, a place where students can study and socialize. At UMKC, the union is also the beneficiary of the students’ pocketbooks, after they voted for a tuition increase to pay for the building’s construction. Building a union worthy of that commitment was a responsibility McCownGordon proudly took on after winning the design-build competition with architect Gould Evans. Constructed with brick and a three-story glass curtain wall, the union reflects both its geographic context and the modern outlook of its inhabitants. Ground level storefronts and eateries greet the campus with vitality. The 120,000 square foot facility also features a grand staircase that connects the main lobby to the top floor. The union houses marketplace dining and seating, retail space, meeting rooms, student government and activities offices, food services and a performing arts/movie theater. Interior finishes like stained concrete and tile stand up to continuous heavy use.