An Active Residential Village
The experience of four years on the Hill prepares our students to thrive within complex communities, living side-by-side with others in an active residential village. We will continue to invest in downtown Gambier, creating vibrant retail and restaurant spaces, new student apartments and additional spaces for student programming. Included in the Campaign:
The Kenyon Bookstore
The nation's longest continuously-operating college bookstore — was remodeled in 2017 to feature more natural lighting, a new storefront, second floor offices for the College’s IT staff, a sprinkler system, an elevator and a natural gas backup generator that allows the bookstore to remain fully functional during power outages.
Farr Hall is being replaced with three mixed-use buildings that have retail and restaurant space with student residences above. The Gambier Deli will be in the space next to the bookstore and a casual Mexican restaurant will have another space, with seating for about 50 people inside and with outdoor seating during good weather. Other retail spaces will be used temporarily as student study spaces during construction of the Kenyon Commons library.
Unity House and the Snowden Multicultural Center
Unity House and the Snowden Multicultural Center relocated to two buildings built just east of where Farr Hall stood. Each one houses eight students and has improved accessibility and more storage than the previous homes for these student populations. The two new residences are part of the replacement of 34 beds in Farr that had become outmoded.
The new Village Market opened on Chase Avenue in 2017, with apartments for 12 students on the floors above the grocery. Students earned class credit for adding solar panels to the market’s roof.
A new experimental theater named for legendary drama professor Harlene Marley H’05 now sits on the north end of campus as a replacement for the Chase Avenue bank building demolished in 2016 to make way for a modern Village Market. The Marley Theater has 2,000 square feet featuring 900 square feet of performance space that can seat about 75 people, a green room for actors awaiting their cue, a storage room and fully accessible bathrooms.
This 1910 food warehouse in Mount Vernon was transformed into a state-of-the-art film center and community hub to put Kenyon in an education corridor that includes Mount Vernon Nazarene University and Central Ohio Technical College. The renovated building opened in 2017 with a two-story film studio, a film editing room, a 30-seat screening room and a first floor space for the children’s science center SPI. The Wright Center also houses Kenyon’s Office for Community Partnerships, which promotes community-engaged learning in the College’s academic coursework.