Willard J. Walker Hall is designed to accommodate both recent and future growth anticipated at the Walton College of Business at the University of Arkansas in Fayetteville. The building showcases state-of-the-art teaching classrooms and student learning spaces, teaming rooms, spaces for industry partnering, and a trading room. Walker Hall takes advantage of its hillside location to project a contemporary image visible from downtown Fayetteville. It presents itself as a solid mass with a series of protruding glass boxes that express key interior spaces.
Inside, four architectural staircases connecting the five floors lead one through a succession of double-height spaces that are nodes for the primary programmatic elements of the building. Red, ochre, and gray stained concrete floors visually define a hierarchy of plazas, avenues, and streets.
The vertical organization of the program promotes connections between undergraduates, graduate students, and the various research centers. The largest of these double-height volumes is the forum, which links together Shollmier Plaza, café seating areas, a 150-seat auditorium and the trading center. Other double-height spaces are adjacent to undergraduate classrooms, research center meeting rooms, and a graduate reading resource room.
Walker Hall, along with the adjacent Center for Academic Excellence building, frames a new academic quadrangle. The strong massing, materials, and landscape tie together the previously undefined campus precinct.