Finalists revealed for Theodore Roosevelt library design

21 May 2020
Credit: Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library Foundation
  • Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library Foundation

Medora, ND

United States

Henning Larsen, Snøhetta and Studio Gang to compete for commission

The Theodore Roosevelt Presidential Library Foundation (TRPLF) has named the three finalists who will compete to become design architect for the new library, situated in the Badlands of North Dakota. Henning Larsen, Snøhetta, and Studio Gang were selected after an extensive search and interview process. 

The future library’s location in a national park was an important part of the brief set by TRPLF. The striking landscape influenced Roosevelt when he first visited in 1883 to hunt buffalo, returning a year later to seek refuge following the deaths of his wife and mother on the same day. While there, he pursued the “strenuous life,” transforming himself into the larger-than-life character popularly remembered today. 

As currently envisioned, the contest organisers seek a design that will reflect the enduring spirit of Roosevelt, bringing together a state-of-the-art digital library and artifact collections, alongside exhibits and programmes for visitors and scholars to share in the experiences of Roosevelt’s life and his connection to North Dakota and the natural world.

“These architects share our vision and values,” said Melani Walton, chair of the Design + Architecture Committee. “They want to listen and spend time with the community, study the ecology of the Badlands, and embrace the complexities of Theodore Roosevelt’s life.” 

Design concepts are due by 17th July, with digital or model renderings to be completed by 3rd August. Ken Vein, director of design and construction, is working with city officials at the site in Medora and the Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation to facilitate safe working sessions by each architectural and design team in June. 

“The world needs T.R. now more than ever,” said Edward F. O’Keefe, TRPLF Chief Executive Officer. “I have been asked frequently what Theodore Roosevelt might do were he with us during these challenging times; my answer is simple: T.R. endures. He would persevere, and so that’s what we are going to do.” 

Lucy Nordberg
TenderStream Head of Research

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