The College of Notre Dame of Maryland is the oldest Catholic women's college in North America. Founded in 1873, its buildings crown the hill of a spacious suburban site. Challenged by the competition for students of small co-educational institutions, and by the need to strengthen its programs, especially in the sciences, the College commissioned a master plan to help guide its physical growth in its second century. The master plan reorganizes roads and parking to create a formal College Walk and to make room for expanded sports fields as well as a number of new buildings and additions. The first of these is the addition to the Knott Science Center, a new 40,000 square foot wing that provides additional state-of-the-art laboratories, support space, classrooms, and offices, as well as a dignified entrance to what was, at best, a workhorse building from the 1950s. Stylistically, the new wing refers to the Gothic of Gibbons Hall (1873), the College's first building and still it’s most important.