World Peace Center - Maharishi University

Prince George's County, Maryland

Maharishi University was founded in the year 1981 in Fairfield, Iowa. The curriculum for the university is based on Vedic principles and transcendental meditation. Maharishi University wanted to create a similar program near the nation's capital through a new campus.

A one hundred and fifty seven acre site adjoining Crain Highway in Prince George’s County was considered for the project. Initial programming for the project was developed through several meetings with Maharishi University's representative. During the development of the program it was agreed that a project of this magnitude be developed for phased construction. In total over 1,000,000 sq. ft. of space was developed for the program which included a research center, classroom buildings, library, student housing, faculty & staff housing, administration, receiving & distribution areas, vehicle maintenance facilities, and visitor center.

The layout is takes into account the site's level topography. The main research center with domed roof is placed at the focal point of the site. Column-less high volume spaces would accommodate the research center, visitor center and assembly related spaces. Similarly the other two segments of the campus would include a domed structure for similar functions but on a smaller scale. Vehicular access is provided at the front entrance and visitor's area. Vehicular access to the campus is kept to a minimum while providing access for fire department vehicles. A perimeter road provides access to most of the service related facilities. Faculty and staff housing was designed to be built on the outer periphery of the radial road and would take place on an as needed basis.

The exterior character for the buildings consists of sloped and domed roofs with laminated wood construction. The building materials considered for the buildings were brick and stone veneer. This project was developed in association with Greenhorne & O’Mara.