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Kellogg Breaks Ground On $220 Million Hub

Inside the new home of the Kellogg School of Management

Inside the new home of the Kellogg School of Management


Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management today (Nov. 14) broke ground for a new and ultra-modern new home that will offer dramatic vistas of Lake Michigan and Chicago’s skyline. In support of the new five-story, 410,00-square-foot “global hub,” Dean Sally Blount also announced the launch of a $350 million capital campaign.

A new $220 million building for Kellogg has been on Blount’s agenda shortly after she became dean in July of 2010 from New York University where she led the Stern School’s undergraduate business program. Blount has poured money into the Donald Jacobs Center to freshen up the place, renovating several parts of the building in advance of getting a completely new home. But it has been clear for some time that Kellogg has outgrown its current home.

Many rivals, moreover, have since put up more spacious and modern facilities, including the University of Chicago’s Booth School of Business, which opened the doors on its new $125 million home in 2004, and Stanford’s Graduate School of Business, which opened its $345 million nine-building complex in 2011. Yale University’s School of Management is just about to move into its new 242,000 square-foot Edward Evans Hall in January.

At the groundbreaking celebration, Gordon I. Segal, chair of the trustees’ Educational Properties Committee, said matter-of-factly that Kellogg’s present facilities “weren’t up to standards” and that it was important for the school to have a first-rate facility if it is to attract the best and brightest students and faculty moving forward.


Kellogg’s new hub will feature what the school called “a flexible, multi-faceted space” that can be easily reconfigured so that lecture-style classrooms can become large seminar rooms and offices can become study rooms. The building’s signature space will be a two-story 6,600-square-foot conservatory, designed as a destination for business and civic leaders. The space will be able to accommodate 250 people for dinners or 350 people for speeches and presentations.

Construction on Kellogg’s new facility on what is now a lakefront parking lot next to the Allen Center will begin early in 2014, with an expected completion date in late 2016. The building is being designed by Toronto-based KPMB Architects, which was also the architect for the University of Toronto’s new Rotman School of Management building. “The design of our new global hub embodies our commitment to inspiring brave thinking and catalyzing bold action as we meet the changing needs for management education in an increasingly complex and demanding global marketplace,” Blount said in a statement.

Kellogg students, faculty, administrators and alumni were involved in the design process, which included visits by the design team to organizations such as Google and Pixar to learn more about creating spaces that support collaborative learning and innovation. The design team included Booz & Company in the early conceptualization process, bringing the best in design thinking to the project, the school said.

“I think the new building is awesome,” second-year MBA Jeremy O’Briant told The Daily Northwestern student newspaper. “I’m blown away by the design. It’s an exciting time for the school and good for the future. There’s  been a lot of buzz about the new building.”


The new building and the existing James L. Allen Center, which houses Kellogg’s executive education programs, will form a world-class lakefront business campus. Together, they represent a comprehensive strategy to advance business education and thought leadership at Northwestern.The new facility for Kellogg also will serve as the headquarters for the department of economics in the Weinberg College of Arts and Sciences.

The announcement of the $350 million capital campaign, the school said, emphasizes Kellogg’s determination to remain one of the world’s premier business schools.

About The Author

John A. Byrne is the founder and editor-in-chief of C-Change Media, publishers of Poets&Quants and four other higher education websites. He has authored or co-authored more than ten books, including two New York Times bestsellers. John is the former executive editor of Businessweek, editor-in-chief of Businessweek. com, editor-in-chief of Fast Company, and the creator of the first regularly published rankings of business schools. As the co-founder of CentreCourt MBA Festivals, he hopes to meet you at the next MBA event in-person or online.