In October 1897, the Board of Regents announced a competition for the design of the new Collegiate Building. Instructions to the architects specified that the building must be fireproof and must cost no more than $150,000 but otherwise gave wide latitude in matters of design. Secretary William Haddock received proposals from twenty-two architects, eight of whom he asked to resubmit plans, looking for, in his words, "a good square turn of Iowa Renaissance." The Board hired as judge Henry Van Brundt of Kansas City, one of the architects of the 1893 World's Fair. Van Brundt chose a scheme in the grand style of the exhibition by the Des Moines firm of Proudfoot, Bird, and Rawson and recommended that the regents locate the new building east of the established axis then running north and south from the Old Capitol. Evidence suggests that this was part of his plan to group four architecturally similar buildings around the Old Capitol, forming what would come to be called the Pentacrest.
Photographs used on this webpage were provided by the Kent Collection, Special Collections Department, University of Iowa Libraries.