The design for the Concordia Senior College campus in Fort Wayne, IN, is another collaboration between Kiley and Eero Saarinen. Located just two-and-a-half hours from Columbus where the two had worked on numerous commissions, the project entailed creating a new campus for the seminary, which would be the first Protestant pre-theological college in the U.S. Saarinen created a master plan and designed the buildings for the 191-acre property. In his campus design consisting of twenty-eight Modern buildings divided into three groupings, the seminary’s chapel became a focal point, set upon a small hill, around which the rest of the campus was laid out. His inspiration came from a typical Scandinavian village layout used between the 1300s and the 1700s. At the 1958 dedication, Saarinen said of the campus design: “We have hoped to create buildings functional and workable for the special needs of this college and to create permanent and dignified, yet friendly and serene, surroundings with the greatest possible economy.” 
Set below the chapel, a low valley was transformed into a nine-acre lake. The water feature spreads out to the south, while the majority of the campus buildings are grouped to the north with the administrative buildings clustered around the chapel. A large open lawn dotted with trees abuts the lake, while pre-existing woodland borders the western edge of the campus. Kiley’s planting plans called for thousands of trees. Weeping willows arched along the banks of the lake, crepe myrtle lined parking lots, and the curving campus drives were planted with allées of honey locust and Oriental plane trees. Other species, including ash, sweet gum, flowering crabapple, and buckeye maple were spread throughout the campus along with flowering shrubs often grouped towards the edge of the open lawn.
On May 21, 2001, an F-2 tornado devastated the campus landscape. Nearly 800 trees were lost from Kiley’s design. While campus insurance did not cover the cost to replace the lost trees, the seminary, recognizing the value of its historic landscape, sought to repair the damage. At age 89, Dan Kiley, along with architect Jay Carow, visited the campus and surveyed the damage. His recommendations were used to inform a campus restoration that resulted in replanting almost 350 trees. While the full campus planting plan was never restored - some tree clusters were thinned, and tree spacing was widened from Kiley’s original scheme - this restoration effort was a significant step in bringing the campus landscape back from the devastation. Further alterations to the historic landscape occurred in the 2009, when a library expansion was constructed along the edge of the lake, changing the constructed lakeshore. Throughout the expansion process the college consulted with experts on how to best implement the project with the least impact on the historic campus design. In 2007 the seminary was invited to apply for a Campus Heritage Grant from the Getty Foundation to document and create a preservation plan for the campus. While the seminary applied, they did not receive the grant, and since that time they have not pursued designation in the National Register of Historic Places. Continuing their sympathetic stewardship, we hope that the seminary will take the opportunity to apply for listing in the National Register of Historic Places, in order to help further recognize and solidify the future of this significant design.
1 Saarinen, Eero, “From the Architect,” Concordia Senior College Dedication. 1958.
Glenn, Jenni. “Concordia, ARCH align on library plan,” The Journal Gazette, April 17, 2009, http://www.journalgazette.net/article/20090417/LOCAL/304179981/-1/LOCAL11.
Drawings + Documents Archive. “Dan Kiley Fort Wayne Drawings Donated to the Archive,” http://ddarchive.blogspot.com/2011/04/dan-kiley-fort-wayne-drawings-donated.html.
The Cultural Landscape Foundation. “Cradle of Modernism: North Christian Church,” http://tclf.org/landslides/cradle-modernism-north-christian-church.
The Cultural Landscape Foundation. “What’s Out There: Concordia Theological Seminary,” http://tclf.org/landscapes/concordia-theological-seminary.
Plan courtesy Papers of Dan Kiley, Frances Loeb Library, Harvard University.