Project Type

Academic Dining Hall


University of Connecticut


Completed 2012


Storrs, CT


5,000 SF addition, 14,000 SF renovation, 500 seats


LEED Commercial Interiors Gold


Anton Grassl, Paul Burke

This is a terrific step forward in our service to students. We have applied advanced, sustainable technologies while creating a great place people want to spend time in.

Dennis Pierce, Director of Dining Services, University of Connecticut

Partnering with the University of Connecticut, PCA was tasked to transform the under-performing 300-seat dining center at the McMahon residential complex into a modern, sustainable, multipurpose social and dining place. Open since the mid 1960s, McMahon formerly operated an uninspired single cafeteria serving a central dining room lined with rectangular cafeteria-style tables. Being one of the main dining halls on its large campus, UConn aimed to make this space a showcase for great food and student interaction.

PCA’s design is a significant advancement in UConn’s dining approach. The 14,000 SF 500-seat project includes a complete renovation of the existing facility and a 5,000 SF “glass pavilion in the woods” addition. Our concept creates a lively, social environment which showcases the food and offers seating alternatives that encourage students to gather, study, dine, or relax.

Best Small Project, 2013

Engineering News Record

Power of Change Award – Most Energy Efficient Top Building, 2013

Power of Change Consortium, State of Connecticut

1st Place for Excellence in Renovation / Construction, 2013

Associated Builders & Contractors