Armstrong Dining Hall
Family style meals differentiate this school.
Family style dinners were central to the Westminster experience, but the timing and limited space in the old dining hall didn’t allow day students to participate. With the new dining hall and the change from family style dinner to family style lunch, the entire Westminster community can now come together to share meals. The main dining room seats 480 people. Its large scale is broken up into three distinct areas, giving a sense of intimacy for dining conversations yet allowing everyone to see a single speaker and other presentations. Wood trusses and dormers in the ceiling further scale the space.
Special features transform the hall into an event space.
A large clearstory distinguishes the facility and floods the interior with natural light. Large windows provide dramatic views of the Farmington River Valley. Features like a large masonry fireplace, customized lighting and audiovisual capabilities extend the use of the space beyond dining to special events and school-wide celebrations, making it a multi-purpose gathering space.
Creating connections between students and staff.
A large lobby eases circulation and offers views of and entrances to the main dining room, servery and a secondary dining room that seats 120 people and is used for staff meals, meetings and special events. In the Servery, students and faculty can see the full kitchen in operation as they select hot entrées from the main serving line and cold food items from large islands. The open kitchen allows kitchen staff to interact with students and faculty during meal preparation and serving.
Outdoor spaces complement the dining hall.
The three-level dining hall strengthens the campus’ academic core while the steeply sloped roofs and dormer windows echo the architectural character of the original campus buildings. Outdoor space includes two terraces. One overlooks the valley and seats 45 people. Another faces the campus green and seats 35 people. It features a gas fire pit, making it a popular social gathering space on campus.
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