Fairfield, Ia. - A historic building that was torn down because it lacked "spiritual energy" will be replaced with one that "promotes better health, relationships and good fortune" on the Maharishi University of Management campus.
School officials razed Parsons Hall in May because its entrance faced south, rather than east in accordance with the principles of Maharishi Sthapatya Veda design.
A $1 million private donation, school officials said, will help launch a new, 12,000-square-foot computer science building on the site. Built in 1915, Parsons Hall was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1983.
While some opponents threatened to rally when it was demolished, there was no such protest.
Administrators are redeveloping the former Parsons College campus, which was bought in 1975 by followers of the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, the founder of the Transcendental Meditation movement.
They have demolished five old buildings over the past year and constructed several new ones, including a $2 million university administration and teaching center, the Dreier Building.
The new building will be home to the master's in computer science co-op program, said the school's executive vice president, Craig Pearson. The campus face lift will also include buildings for management, Maharishi Vedic medicine and digital media. New student dormitories are also a priority, Pearson said.
He said part of the reason for the campus overhaul is that many buildings are too expensive to maintain. But the benefits of work and study in buildings constructed according to Vedic architecture, he said, is prime consideration. "These buildings promote creativity, clear thinking, health and well-being," he said.
People working in the Dreier Building have reported increased productivity and "greater freshness at the end of the day," he said.
"We look forward to the continued great, good fortune that buildings built in accord with natural law will bring," said Pearson. New: A sketch shows the planned Maharishi building.