Unity Tower – Awaken Whole Life Center
Exterior and Interior Rehabilitation and Prayer Garden
The Unity Tower at Unity Village, Missouri was completed in 1929 to provide 100,000 gallons of potable water storage for the Unity School of Christianity Campus and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as part of the Unity Village Historic District. This iconic structure which can be seen from miles around serves as a beacon of spiritual health and well-being.
Our firm provided comprehensive architectural design services from programming, schematic/design development and construction documents through construction administration. Working closely with the ownership team and AL Huber Construction Company, the Tower was completely rehabilitated after being vacant for over a decade. Our design approach centered on creating unique spaces within the existing constraints of the tower while promoting the spiritual healing mission of the center. In addition to the new interior spaces several life safety improvements were integrated. The water tank was restored to DNR standards to continue to serve the campus for the next 50 years. A new egress stair was added to provide safe and efficient movement throughout the building, augmented by an existing spiral stair which was restored. The existing elevator received upgrades to modernize and improve safety and reliability. A new larger elevator cab, controls and motor were installed to improve the elevator function and aesthetics.
The exterior restoration included restoration of native limestone at the base, stucco repairs and a new breathable stucco coating on the body and the production of cast stone replacement units to match the original cast stone of the Tower. A new feature at the observation deck is the addition of a custom granite compass set in the center of the deck area commemorating all the key project donors who helped make this project possible.
Around the Tower is a beautiful prayer garden designed by Vireo was inspired by the Anahata or Heart Chakra and Unity’s 12 Powers emphasizing the spiritual life and abilities present in every person. The 12 Powers help guide the visitor’s journey clockwise through the garden with each of the 12 petals aligned with one of the powers. By progressing through the circular walk, visitors can immerse themselves in Nature while interacting with the messages and symbolism of the Unity Faith.