October 11, 2023

Updated Stewart-Odell Residence Halls Enliven the Heart of Campus

This fall, Lewis & Clark reopened the Stewart-Odell residence halls after a sweeping renovation. In addition to many interior and exterior upgrades, Stewart-Odell now houses the Travel Lounge Living-Learning Community, the Student Counseling Center, and select Campus Living offices.

Exterior view of renovated halls. The renovated Stewart-Odell residence halls offer students a convenient home at the heart of campus.
Credit: Adam Bacher

The Stewart-Odell residence halls, which have welcomed generations of L&C students since the 1950s, reopened this fall after a significant nine-month renovation. Located immediately west of Fowler Student Center, also recently renovated, Stewart-Odell offers students a convenient home at the heart of campus.

“There is much to be excited about with the renovations in Stewart-Odell,” says Evette Castillo Clark, vice president for student life and dean of students. “We’ve always got a pulse on trying to better our students’ experience, and I think the latest renovations in Stewart-Odell have generated a lot of student excitement and engagement. I love that residents can access Fowler Student Center and other campus resources just across the way.”

New Features

Stewart-Odell is designed to house up to 167 students, mostly in doubles, with seven singles and one triple. Changes to the residence halls are immediately apparent when viewed from the outside. Both buildings have new roofs, fresh paint, updated windows, and more—all of which create a welcoming energy and aesthetic.

But many of the most significant changes affected the interior of the buildings. Stewart-Odell residents now enjoy:

  • A new heating and cooling system—Gone are the dated noisy pipes used for heating. In their place, the buildings have a new and quieter state of the art heating and cooling system. It uses no fossil fuels and includes heat-recovery ventilation using a filtered dedicated outdoor air supply. Occupants can expect top-notch indoor air quality.
  • Safety upgrades—The buildings have received safety upgrades, including new fire alarm systems as well as seismic structure upgrades.
  • Greater accessibility—The buildings have more accessibility features, achieving almost double the code-required ADA enhancement investment. Upgrades include entrance ramps with door operators, accessible bedrooms equipped with their own door operators, and a new accessible laundry room. The project also includes a new accessible student pathway from Fowler Student Center, past the Odell entrance, and wrapping around to the Stewart entrance.
  • Adaptive reuse features—The renovation is based on an adaptive reuse philosophy, where much of the original design, and that unique Lewis & Clark charm, has been retained and integrated into the buildings’ upgrades. Familiar and reused features that occupants might notice include fire system piping, ceiling heights, room doors, and door hardware.

“The Stewart-Odell renovation has provided more accessible residential spaces and gender-inclusive restroom facilities right in the heart of campus,” says Ben Meoz, associate vice president of campus living and senior associate dean of students. “Residents enjoy the close proximity to the vibrant student life of Fowler Student Center and the short walk to and from classroom facilities.”

The Travel Lounge

The revamped facilities now include a new Living-Learning Community called the Travel Lounge. It’s designed to be a bridge between a student’s experience participating in L&C overseas study programs and their experiences on campus.

Residents of the Travel Lounge will be engaged in programs and peer mentorship surrounding topics of culture and identity, with the ultimate goal of strengthening cross-cultural communication and self-reflection skills.

The Travel Lounge will focus on pre-travel orientation, post-travel reflection, developing intercultural capacity to help students feel more prepared for cross-cultural experiences, and connecting residents with others who will be traveling, who have traveled, and/or who are considering traveling to similar regions. The Office of Overseas and Off-Campus Programs is a partner in Travel Lounge programming.

Student Counseling Center

Included in the renovation was the centralizing of the Student Counseling Center in lower Odell. Student Counseling Center staff are committed to supporting the emotional health and well-being of all L&C students—undergraduates, law students, and graduate students. Licensed mental health clinicians offer primarily short-term individual, couples, and group therapy, as well as crisis counseling and some psychiatry services. About 15 percent of Lewis & Clark students (25 percent of undergraduates) visit the Student Counseling Center each year.

The Odell Annex

The renovation included the creation of the Odell Annex. This area features a new 800-square-foot Odell residential lounge and a 1,600-square-foot space that is home to select Student Life offices, including a new residential services desk where students can get support for all of their housing-related needs.

“Odell has been a fantastic move-in so far, and I’m really happy with my current living arrangement,” says Henry Reidy BA ’26, a sophomore from Denver. “I’m especially happy with the view from Odell, the close proximity to important buildings, the AC, and the bathrooms. Even in an overflow triple, I’ve found there is a lot of space and room for decoration, and the large bathrooms really add to that. I find that Odell’s renovations give significant enhancements to student life that I have really enjoyed.”

Student Life Campus Living 
Living-Learning Communities Student Counseling Center