Situated on a 10-acre campus in the heart of Kansas City, MO, the Stowers Institute for Medical Research is one of the world's most innovative biomedical research institutions. The buildings contain 600,000 square feet of workspace including laboratories, technology centers, scientific support facilities and administrative offices.
Design Encourages Interaction
The design and construction of the facility was guided by Jim and Virginia Stowers’ vision for the Institute: A cutting-edge research facility with a warm and inspiring atmosphere that would promote interaction and collaboration between scientists. Contrary to the antiseptic feel of many new laboratories, the art-filled and welcoming environment underscores the intent of the facility to encourage collaborative efforts to perform cutting-edge biomedical research.
The interior is dominated by open spaces, limestone and slate flooring, artistic glass and wood panels made of anigre and makore. The library, located in the science building, is designed to integrate quiet spaces for reading with interactive areas for larger group discussions. Soaring glass panels above the fireplace are inscribed with the words Hope for Life® — the institute's slogan — in 22 languages. Scientific symposia featuring local and national speakers are hosted routinely in the 200-seat auditorium. The gallery area is a site for gatherings or solitary reflection.
At the heart of the Stowers Institute are state-of-the-art laboratories that easily adapt to the requirements of a variety of research programs. Each floor of the science buildings can accommodate six to eight investigators and their research teams in modular office, lab and lab support spaces. Shared research support areas occupy the center area between the two rows of laboratories. Depending upon the need of individual scientists on the floor, the support areas include darkrooms, tissue culture labs, shared equipment rooms, and cold rooms. Technology centers and institute wide core facilities are conveniently interspersed with research labs throughout the campus to promote interactions between groups and efficient use of space.
A typical investigator’s laboratory space includes a library encircled by a coffee room, computer room, administrative support space, scientist's office, conference room and adjacent laboratory. Lab spaces are connected by interior doors, making it easy for researchers to brainstorm and discuss their work with colleagues in other labs.
Ponds, Fountains, Natural stone
The entrance to the Institute off East 50th Street features an entry circle and courtyard with semi-circular roof. A fountain and 31-foot sculpture of a DNA helix, entitled Hope for Life®, complete the Institute's impressive entrance. The Institute's west-campus water garden features a series of connecting geyser fountains, waterfalls, pools and ponds interspersed with a gazebo, walking paths and bridges.
The one-and-a-half block long water wall along the north side of the Institute cascades on two levels for a nearly 30-foot drop to the street level below.
The four-story administrative building adjacent to the research facility houses a health club, offices and a floor of one- and two-bedroom guest suites for visiting researchers. The exterior walls are made of pre-cast concrete in the pale, cottonwood limestone color favored in the neighborhood.
A Dynamic Neighborhood
In addition to being a remarkable and unique place to conduct research, the Institute adds another architectural gem to the surrounding neighborhood. Situated across the street from the leafy campus of the University of Missouri at Kansas City, the Stowers Institute is a few blocks from the neo-classic Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art and the widely admired Country Club Plaza, a shopping and dining district. A few blocks to the west is MRIGlobal, an organization that has performed contract research and development for government and private industry for more than 50 years. Just southeast of the Stowers site is the campus of Rockhurst University.
Stowers Support Facility
The Stowers Institute also maintains a 280,000 square foot complex in South Kansas City, which accommodates additional support functions and storage facilities.
The Stowers Institute for Medical Research has limited meeting space for groups and organizations that fall within its eligibility criteria. Groups should be not-for-profit organizations with a scientific mission similar to that of the Stowers Institute. Commercial, for-profit and personal use is restricted.
For more information about our facility use guidelines, contact:
The Stowers Institute for Medical Research is unable to offer tours to the public.